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Concerned about a potential Internet Apocalypse? Here's how to get ready for it.


Lindale Harrison : 02-29-2024

Living in a world without the internet seems very scary but there is a possibility for that to happen. Our lives are so dependent on the network now that even imagining such a situation is unbearable for us. 


A complete Internet Shutdown has happened before

In 1989, a devastating solar storm knocked out power for twelve hours in Quebec, leaving millions of people without power and closing schools and businesses. The Carrington Event of 1859, the strongest solar storm ever recorded, caused telegraph station fires and hindered the sending of messages. The Carrington Event would have even more devastating effects today, including extensive power outages, ongoing blackouts, and disruptions to international communications. Such a technology debacle might destroy economies and jeopardize people's livelihoods and safety all around the planet.


What is the risk of this happening?

According to astrophysicists mentioned by study author Sangeetha Abdu Jyothi of UC Irvine in 2021, the likelihood of an internet-disrupting event occurring is estimated to be between 1.6% and 12% every decade. She claimed that if this were to occur, the impacts on the technology culture of today would be more severe than in the past.

Since we have never seen one of these extreme case occurrences, we are unsure of how our infrastructure would react. Such eventualities are not even included in our failure testing.


What else can cause an internet disruption?

Natural Disasters: Natural calamities like tsunamis, earthquakes, and violent storms can destroy important internet infrastructure. The damage to the cables and data centers can affect internet speeds and availability in large areas.

Cyber-Attacks: Cyber-attacks can cause the internet to cease working and can also cause tremendous problems in connectivity. The hackers might break into important internet sections, for instance, internet service providers, and make it stop working or even make it unsafe to connect to the network. 

Solar Storms: Solar flares can cause energy bursts from the sun or the EMPs from nuclear explosions can mess up internet infrastructure for a long time. Resetting the internet equipment in such cases takes a long time. 

Terrorist Attacks: If there's a terrorist attack or a long-lasting war that targets important parts of the internet, it can also cause the internet to stop working. This happens because the communication networks that make the internet possible get messed up or destroyed.

Infrastructure Failure: Critical internet infrastructure can age and become unmaintained, which can cause malfunctions and extensive outages. Technical issues, power system breakdowns, or a lack of capacity to meet growing demand can all cause this.

Government Regulations or Censorship: In certain extreme situations, governments may implement stringent guidelines, filter content, or completely block internet access, thereby bringing about the apocalyptic internet within their borders.


What can you do to prepare?

You should make the same preparations for an internet disaster as you would for a natural disaster if you're concerned about its potential. However, think about including a few other communication alternatives in addition to the standard measures:

Assemble an Emergency Supply Kit: Put together an offline backup pack for an online disaster, similar to what you would do for a natural calamity. Essentials like a flashlight, extra batteries, non-perishable food, clean water, first aid supplies, and a printed map of your area should be included in this kit. Even without internet access, these things will keep you informed and engaged.

Get Ready for Offline Communication: It's critical to have backup connections in case the internet goes down. Establish offline avenues of contact by working with your friends, family, or neighborhood. This could entail using walkie-talkies, deciding on signals in advance, or arranging meeting locations. If you need to put in place a long-distance communication, then get a satellite or phone or a ham radio. 

Keep Cash on Hand: keeping some cash as your emergency fund is an appropriate solution in case ATMs and the entire digital payment network go down. To ensure that you can still buy some days’ worth of utilities like food or gas, keep some cash stacked for such a time. 

Secure Your Important Data: Backing up your digital information is crucial in case of an internet disaster. Save important documents, photos, and data on external hard drives or offline storage devices. Also, create a physical document binder with printed copies of vital papers such as IDs, medical records, and emergency contacts. Storing this information offline ensures access even if the internet is down.

Get offline resources: Offline resources are crucial in a world without the internet. Start building a physical library of reference materials, books, encyclopedias, and survival guides so that you have access to helpful knowledge and amusement in the event of an internet outage. To continue learning and accessing information when offline, think about buying offline versions of essential apps, such as offline dictionaries, maps, and educational resources.

Develop Essential abilities: It's critical to have abilities that don't rely as heavily on technology if you want to survive in the internet apocalypse. Develop your first aid and survival skills, learn about alternative energy sources, and learn how to perform simple do-it-yourself repairs. Developing interests such as cooking, crafting, or gardening can also keep you busy and independent when you don't have internet access for extended periods.

Join Offline Communities: It can be quite helpful to connect with people who share your beliefs and are getting ready for the end of the internet. Become involved with neighborhood organizations or groups that emphasize sustainable living, disaster preparedness, or offline skills. Participating in offline groups can offer a network of support, a place to share knowledge, and chances for cooperation when things go hard.


In summary

There was never a warning from NASA regarding impending solar storm activity. They are developing technologies that might be able to forecast solar activity that could impair the internet.

However, it never hurts to be prepared because there are a variety of reasons why internet outages could occur. Take the actions mentioned above to prepare yourself for handling an internet outage. Being prepared is crucial. By taking proactive steps to safeguard your data, create offline resources, set up alternate routes of communication, and acquire the necessary skills, you can make sure you're equipped to handle any difficulties that may occur in the event of an internet apocalypse.



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