Safety is Your Responsibility
EvE Online does not assume that anywhere is “Safe” merely “Safer.” People will be punished for their actions in highsec, and in lowsec, but you will not be saved. You are vulnerable to rats everywhere outside a station. Your ship is your responsibility.
You have to take the game environment into account when you plan your activities. This is no different from every other game out there. Mario doesn’t let you walk through goombas and koopas. Tetris doesn’t let you build modern-art masterpieces (for long) WoW doesn’t let you kill Deathwing in a naked level 1 toon.
There are ways to prepare yourself for situations in EvE. If you are running a mission against Sansha, tank EM/Therm. Going into a Wormhole? Watch your direction scanner. Moving stuff to null? Make sure your contact is legit. Mining during the most heavily advertised player-driven anti-miner event? TAKE REASONABLE PRECAUTIONS. Bounce between safespots in your belt if it’s big enough. Mine in a tanked ship to give yourself a chance to survive a poorly planned gank. Watch D-Scan for tornadoes, catalysts and thrashers. Look for ships cloaking or decloaking in your belt. If someone scans your ship, leave. Bring friends with remote reps. I’ve had a gank prevented by an orca with RR bots and mods. I’ve heard of a few others. It won’t save you from a big gank squad but it gives you a chance against a small one.
None of this is really earth-shattering stuff. The Earth-Shattering bit? Being AFK in space isn’t safe. This guy posted This bit of fried gold. This ship has a tank of 10,749 EHP with max skills. You can fill the cargohold in 839 seconds. Almost 14 minutes. To get his cargohold that big he sacrificed more than 2k EHP, not that it would have helped him in a 0.5 against 2 catalysts. Of course to mine plag all he needed to be in was a 0.7 system. Not a 0.5 like he was in. Now he might have actually been online seeing as he had 4 different ores in his hold. Still this is a fit designed for going AFK for 10-12 minutes, coming back, warping off and back, and repeating this while jamming out to some My Little Pwny.
That is not safe behavior in EvE. This isn’t safe behavior anywhere. Going AFK while doing PvE in virtually any game will result in death. Expecting EvE to be THAT different is sad and misinformed. The dangers are different, sometimes less, sometimes more. AFK is still bad. Not paying attention is bad. Not being suspicious is bad. One of my favorite rules of EvE is “Just because you are paranoid doesn’t mean they aren’t out to get you” Catalysts popping up on Dscan? Align out, Covops ship gets uncloaked in your belt? Align out, catalyst warps into your belt? GTFO son. It’s a lot easier if you are pre-aligned.