July 26 (UPI) -- A new study by the U.S. Department of Education says girls are reporting incidents of cyberbullying at a rate three times higher than boys.
The department compiled results from the National Center for Education Statistics for 2017. According to the survey, 21 percent of middle and high school girls say they have been bullied online or by text message, compared to just 7 percent of boys.
The data for the survey was taken from the National Crime Victimization Survey, a yearly review from 95,000 households.
Cyberbullying is defined as bullying that takes place over digital devices like cellphones, computers and tablets and can include sending, posting, or sharing negative, harmful, false, or mean content about someone else.
The government report said cases of online bullying appeared to increase from sixth to seventh grade; less than 7 percent of sixth graders reported a case, whereas that figure jumps to 13.1 percent among seventh graders.
Cyberbullying appeared to top out in 11th grade, where 22 percent said they'd been bullied.
The statistics indicate white students are cyberbullied slightly more, with 17.4 percent saying they were harassed -- compared to 13 percent for Hispanics and 12 percent for African Americans.