Some things we can do:
USE THE INTERNET TO PROVIDE INFORMATION AND COUNTER MISINFORMATIONWe can help educate the community on what to do, and counter misinformation.
In 2005 I supervised a student project at ANU on how to design credible emergency websites. From this a set of Emergency Management Website Assessment Criteria was produced. There is also a detailed report.
SUPPORT EXISTING TOOLS
Also we can assist with tools, services, and support, to help people work, study, and be entertained on-line. Networks and servers may be more heavily loaded than usual. We can implement ways to reduce the load, by configuring systems to use less data and processing, and giving users tips on using them efficiently. As an example, the bandwidth used by video conferencing can be reduced by avoiding using high resolution video (or by avoiding the use of video at all). Web pages can have images with reduced resolution, and optimized code.
SUPPORT EXISTING SPECIALIZED EMERGENCY TOOLSThere are more specialized tech tools for supporting large scale emergencies, such as the Sahana Open Source Disaster Management Software. In 2013 I talked at a Meetup in Colombo to discuss using Sahana for mapping a pandemic.
Sahana was developed by the Sri Lanka tech industry in response to the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami. The software was then used around the world for other emergencies. But it takes time to have such software accepted. One thing done with Sahana was to set up a US registered foundation, not only to get funding, but more importantly, credibility.