The number of bullying cases among adults in Germany has continued to rise in recent years, especially on the internet. In the September 24, 2018 issue of TV show “Volle Kanne - Service täglich,” Dr. Ruben Hofmann, lawyer at Heuking Kühn Lüer Wojtek, detailed why it is frequently difficult to identify perpetrators and what options there are for individuals affected by cyberbullying.
“Quick action is needed to find perpetrators by their IP address. This often fails, however, due to the wheels of justice or the heavy workload of public prosecutor offices,” said Hofmann. Technology makes it easy to conceal IP addresses. In addition, an individual must always be assigned to an IP address. Nevertheless, Hofmann sees opportunities for victims of bullying: “It is possible to identify operators of an abusive site. Even where operators are not identifiable from the data in the website’s Legal Notice or if they are situated in another European country, we are frequently still able to assist. The competent courts are in Germany in many of these cases, for example if the website operators are abroad, but the site addresses a German audience.”