There’s a lot that can go wrong during an internet outage. They may just affect your office, a few sites, or an entire country. You already know to stay calm and be patient, but what are more specific ways to handle you internet not working?

Let’s start with having a backup plan if your personal internet connection fails.

You have a deadline to meet and all of the sudden your email isn’t loading. No matter how many times you click refresh, try a different browser, or unplug your router, nothing is working. One thing to get your productivity back on track quick is turn on your mobile hotspot.

There are two different ways to utilize a mobile internet connection. Your first option is called Tethering. This is when you transfer your smart phone’s internet connection to your computer. Of course, there are costs that go along with this feature through your phone company’s cellular plan, but if you’re someone who depends on the internet to work, it may be a practical option.

You may also try Mobile Broadband, which is exactly what it sounds like. With a portable modem you receive a hot spot through you device. For some this may be a cheaper option than tethering your phone. While you will initially have to purchase the mobile device, the internet service is usually pay-as-you-go or prepaid!

If you don’t have access to a hotspot, there are still options for you. Even though it might require some travel time, it should be easy to find a nearby coffee shop or library with free wifi. If you do resort to mooching internet, don’t forget to use a VPN. (And don’t leave home without your laptop’s charger!)

Before we move on, what are some things you should not do when your personal internet connection fails? Well, don’t stop being productive. Get creative with how you continue working. Don’t rely only on the cloud or web based apps – hopefully you have installed desktop applications and can continue your work with those programs while offline.

If you do put a pause on your work, we encourage you really seize this moment of being unplugged (even if against your will.) Take a hike, read a book, or reconnect with family.

Now let’s say a major site goes out. What should and shouldn’t you do?

It has happened, last October 21st Netflix, Twitter, Reddit, Amazon, HBO and others were inaccessible. After a DDoS attack bombarded their servers with fake traffic requests, real users like you and me couldn’t access their favorite sites. Now, compare the millions of people who sat there confused and refreshing their pages to traffic. There’s already a pile-up (the DDoS attack) and those who were persevering to get to their web content were just piling on more and more cars.

So if there’s ever a website that doesn’t work for you, after trying it in a different browser, stop refreshing! Try again in a hour, otherwise you may be adding more fuel to the fire.

If a site isn’t working for you, there’s a good chance it isn’t working for others as well. If it’s a truly major website that is out, don’t waste your time and energy finding contact information and ranting about how you can’t access their webpage. They have probably already been alerted to the issue. Instead, search for updates and check their social media accounts. If it’s a big enough attack or outage, it will may even be reported on within hours.

Is there a chance a internet outage could affect my entire country?

After this attack and the release of the source code behind it, many began to worry this was just the beginning of internet losses for sites and millions of people. In a day and age where we rely heavily on the IoT, coping with a true internet blackout sounds apocalyptic. There are many ways entire peoples could their internet access. Rather it’s taken away by government, hackers, or even natural causes.

We won’t ever be able to comprehend how much of our daily lives depend on internet connections until that connection is gone. If it’s just your own internet connection we’re confident you’ll be able to wait it out, find productive ways to continue work, and preoccupy yourself with the real world around you.

If you lose access to one of your most visited sites, we recommend the same. Don’t jam up the site by refreshing and asking it to do more work. If you want to get an estimate on when they’ll be back online, do your research.

Meg Krafft

Digital Marketing Assistant at The Security Awareness Company
After starting out creating digital and print marketing for a real estate company, Meg now assists in keeping up the marketing needs for SAC. When not working she's probably watching a good movie or indulging in local art and music.

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