In this article we will examine the importance and implications of the Safer Internet Day, seeing the exponential growth of computer based threats during the last few years. In particular we will be looking at the following arguments:
1. What is the Safer Internet Day, what does it involve?
The Safer Internet Day (SID) is an annual event that celebrates the ‘World Network Security Day’ during the month of February, with the support of the European Commission.
Set up in 2004, during the years it has become a reference point for promoting the necessity of an even safer and more responsible use of the Internet, in particular amongst the younger generations. Children and adolescents are in fact ever more exposed to the risks of negative conditioning, caused by the use of inappropriate content on the web.
Based upon the 2022 Datareportal report on roughly 8 billion inhabitants, more than 5.3 use cell phones, 5 connect to the Internet and 4.7 use Social Networks. We spend on medium, 7 hours a day connected to the Internet, almost one third of our lives, from this, depending on the country, between 1 and 4 are dedicated to Social Networks. The group that is most dependant on the network are those between 16 and 24 years of age, with the number tripling over the last ten years, seeing that in 2012 the billions of users who used the web were 2 and 1.5 used Social Networks.
It is easy to work out that the exponential growth in using the Internet brings about a just as large growth in online risks, not only for the number of connections but also for the multiplied number of harmful or inappropriate pages upon which you can land during surfing. With this kind of general ongoing, an official worldwide day that is dedicated to network security, just as the Safer Internet Day, has undoubtably become a very important occasion for reflecting on the situation as well as proposing new Cyber Security solutions.
2. When and how is the Safer Internet Day?
The Safer Internet Day occurs every year on the second day of the second week of February, therefore Tuesday 07/02/2023, 06/02/2024, 04/02/2025 (also on a Tuesday) and so on.
The initiative is coordinated on a European level by the Insafe network (which since 2018 has also assisted the Inhope foundation) and involves the respective national Safer Internet Centres for that regarding local operations on a promotional level.
Every country therefore uses their own ministries, entities and consortia that look after communications security, citizens rights and juvenile problems, giving them the job of raising awareness through their own channels of communications and press offices.
On a local level, the administrations, scholastic institutions and other varied private organizations activate every year with conventions and manifestations in an effort to spread the necessity of a much safer Internet.
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3. The problems and themes looked at
All that which regards Internet security, in reality, is the object of the Safer Internet Day, but the main part of the local promotions focus on the implications that involve adolescents and children. The new generations, digital natives, are rightfully more at risk in such that their typical day is based around Internet connections. The very young are used to working with programs through messaging Apps or Social Networks.
They also navigate for informative reasons as well as for pure delight. All you have to do is think about TikTok that registers a growth of over 200% during the one and a half hours of connections, on medium, a day from adolescents. Two thirds of these admit to being influenced when it comes to purchases by videos that they have watched. The probability of being conditioned also by inappropriate content is therefore very high indeed.
Cyber bullying, the exchange of child pornography and even child grooming therefore needs to be priority in the awareness campaigns. On these themes there is also added the necessity of better rules and regulations regarding content from an ethic or legal point of view, therefore the necessity of safeguarding the young people from immoral images, violence, drug related posts and even gambling etc..
The Safer Internet Day is an occasion for promoting navigational security on a general level, thus making you aware of the threats from Malware, Phishing, online scams, identity theft, cyber criminal ransom, etc… that don’t just regard younger people but the entire world population.
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4. How to implement the propositions placed forward on Safer Internet Day
Hypothesizing an infallible Cyber Security solution in a world where cyber criminals are on a continual rise with constant innovations is just a utopia. Security must constantly face up to new systems of Malware attacks and threats that are often unknown, see for example the vulnerability that has just been uncovered (0-day). The more complex systems that implicate multiple back up levels, authorizations and role subdivisions (zero trust) are logical for big businesses but unfeasible inside schools or even families. Even the perimeter protection (firewall) often results in being onerous and unmanageable in learning or domestic situations.
The Safer Internet Day highlights instead, for protecting the younger ones you need a simple protective system, always economic and continuously updated. The more immediate solution is an in-cloud protection navigational filter wherever the user might find themselves.
Today it is rather rash to trust an antivirus or URL blacklist because both Malware and links to harmful pages are in continuous change. The new tendency of Cyber Security is instead prevention through investigation and classification of dangerous Internet domains. Through Artificial Intelligence it is today possible to monitor a very high number of domains every single day.
Once the web activity is classified into a category, a filter that is based on the DNS (Domain Name System) can be imposed to block the access of damaging or undesired content. This prevention is continually updated in-cloud without any additional cost and works on all networks, including all devices connected on WiFi and IoT memory (printers, webcams, consoles…) that today are also an ever more frequent vehicle when it comes to Malware infections.
5. The everyday network security of FlashStart
To be sure that the world day for network security leaves a tangible mark throughout the entire year, every organization should look for the most efficient content filter. Being the Safer Internet Day European initiative, in light of the considerations above, we shall examine the European leader in DNS security for a comparison with the American giants.
The platform in question is called FlashStart and during the last years it has affirmed itself on a global level and has become amongst the fastest and most stable DNS resolvers in the world according to independent benchmark detectors dnsperf.com. An Anycast Network with nodes in 5 continents distributes a content and Malware filter with overwhelming advanced characteristics. The Artificial Intelligence from FlashStart has already scanned the active web pages as well as updating continuously the new registered domains, offering a function that is capable of blocking those that have just been registered within the necessary time for investigating even further.
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Also adding the governmental blacklists and risk reports, the Learning Machine of FlashStart reaches a predictive capacity that is over 92.5% that leaves out only the unclassified incomprehensible or inactive pages, therefore ones of no risk. The filter control panel allows you to easily choose between 85 domain categories that can be used for the system blacklist not only for Malware, illicit or immoral activity, but also any other type of content that can be a cause of distraction between students or workers.
The FlashStart protection can also be extended using search results or remote connections. It is easily activated through any router, boasting numerous certifications of compatibility amongst which ‘Made for Mikrotik’. Amongst the unique advantages, not available from global competitors, we find the geographically based protection that allows you to block all traffic towards high-risk countries.
Finally detailed reports, in real time also, chat assistance, a multilingual site (English, Spanish, German and Italian) at a price that is absolutely convenient, all make FlashStart a brilliant solution in any situation. In schools particularly, it is highly appreciated, enough to be exclusively used in numerous schooling institutions in European and South American zones.
We can finish off our analyses by saying that every year the European Safer Internet Day forces the world to make the Internet ever more safer, above all for the younger ones, whilst at the same time FlashStart offers an advanced and efficient solution on a global scale.
You can activate the FlashStart® Cloud protection on any sort of Router and Firewall to secure desktop and mobile devices and IoT devices on local networks.