Secure Internet Day causes website to go down

Although they may be unusual for many users, website shutdown incidents are much more frequent than you think. According to cybersecurity experts, most of these incidents are due to the saturation of their servers, which occurs when thousands (or even hundreds of thousands) of users try to access a site at the same time, activity that exceeds the capabilities of the platform, causing the shutdown.

This is what has happened to the site, belonging to the Safer Internet Day initiative, a global effort to promote safer practices and spaces for all on the Internet, which involves the participation of social media platforms, cybersecurity firms, law enforcement agencies and non-governmental organizations. The website has been offline since this Tuesday morning and is expected to become available again until the commemoration of this date ends.

Since the last decade, the first Tuesday in February has commemorated Safe Internet Day, which began in the European Union as an online campaign to raise awareness of security risks for internet users, mainly for children.  

The main drivers of this campaign were the partners of InSafe, a European network for raising awareness of the safe use of the Internet. A couple of years later, the initiative had already transcended the European continent to become a global effort, with more than 100 participating countries.  

Although the initiative’s initial approach was more related to the kind of content that younger Internet users are exposed to, special emphasis has recently been placed on latent cybersecurity threats, such as malware infections, use of non-updated software, easy-to-guess or factory set passwords, among other practices that put users at risk.

Throughout the day, companies and private organizations use the hashtag #SaferInternetDay to disseminate information, tips and security alerts about the use of the Internet in favor of the security of people and their devices; it should be added that the efforts of each of us contribute to the concreteness of the goals that gave rise to this initiative.