National Safer Internet Day | How to Stay Safe on The Internet

February 19, 2020

February is known as the month in which we remember icons like President Ronald Reagan on President’s Day. But in recent years, that holiday has been joined by another that pays tribute to the ideals Reagan championed, such as freedom and privacy. National Safer Internet Day is marked the first Tuesday of February in an effort to raise awareness about cybersecurity threats—and educate the public about the myriad steps they can take to protect themselves on the web. 

National Safer Internet Day was founded in 2013 and is now observed in more than 100 countries, with significant leadership from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and the European Commission. The U.S. effort includes a website that offers information about cybersecurity year-round as well as a live streaming event on Feb. 11 from California’s Computer History Museum, to give internet users the latest tips and trends on internet security.

A major aim of the National Safer Internet Day is to arm everyday web and email users with the information they need to fend off threats like identity fraud, theft, cyberbullying and human trafficking. Though each of those challenges, and the many other threats that exist in online spaces, are complex, international struggles, there are many things individual users can do to contribute to the internet being a safer place for everyone to communicate, work, play and learn.

Here are a few topics of discussion that will be sure to be addressed on National Safer Internet Day — and which should be on every internet user’s mind year-round:


  1. Password security: While it may seem simple, many internet and email users aren’t proactive enough about selecting strong passwords and changing them frequently. A weak password can be an easy entry point a hacker needs.


  1. Private email: A private email service like provides the vital security email users need. With end-to-end encryption and other safety features, private email is the best way to know that your messages are being sent and stored securely—and that you won’t fall victim to the growing trends of email-based scams.


  1. Social media: National Safer Internet Day has a strong focus on educating young people, the majority of whom are communicating frequently on social media. Such sites can be treasure-troves for hackers, who can easily access personal information that can be used for a range of schemes, as well as cyberbullies. It’s imperative that young folks know how to identify red flags and report any instances of harassment on social media so that they can fully reap the benefits of these sites without worrying about the threats that also exist there.

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