Thursday, February 13, 2014

Microsoft Participates in Safer Internet Day by Insafe

Now here is a corporate effort I can support. Microsoft plugged and participated in International Safer Internet Day, held February 11, organized by Insafe, and co-funded by the European Union.

As a participant and sponsor, the corporation:

  • Launched an interactive web site that encourages "people to 'Do 1 Thing' to stay safer online." (It might be noteworthy that the effort also supports TechSoup Global, which delivers technology to those in need, according to MS)
  • They released the results of the annual Microsoft Computing Safety Index (MCSI), which surveys 10,000 Internet users about their online safety behaviors. Some highlights of this report:
"Results show the annual worldwide impact of phishing and various forms of identity theft could be as high as $5.0 billion, with the cost of repairing damage to peoples’ online reputations higher still at nearly $6.0 billion. Still, only one in five (21 percent) of those surveyed said they take advantage of web-browser filters to help protect against phishing, and less than a third (31 percent) said they educate themselves about protecting their online reputations. Even fewer respondents said they use technical tools to edit or delete info about them online (19 percent), or use search engines to “Bing themselves” (15 percent)."
  • Helping to sponsor the US's first official Safer Internet Day event in Washington, DC, hosted by (Wry editorial note: other sponsors include giants like Google, Sprint, Twitter, and Facebook- perhaps this is more of a PR move than anything else?)
  • Provided Internet safety activities for their Redmond, WA employees
It's nice to see that a large US corporation recognizes the importance to making the Internet safer for everyone. 

But perhaps a bigger story is that Insafe exists (before today, I didn't know about it), and that it appears to be a thriving organization that has buy-in from most European countries. I'm adding this organization to's list of resources and will follow the group's efforts.

For more information, see Microsoft's Safer Internet Day page on their Safety and Security web site and the Microsoft Services Jobs blog.

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