More than 800 000 people die every year from suicide, and about 20 times more attempt suicide. In most countries, suicide risk is highest in older males, and risk of attempted suicide is highest in younger females. The higher lethal level of suicidal acts in males is explained by the preference for more lethal methods, as well as other factors. In the vast majority of cases, suicidal behavior occurs in the context of psychiatric disorders, depression being the most important one. Improving the treatment of depression, restricting access to lethal means, and avoiding the Werther effect (imitation suicide) are central aspects of suicide prevention programs. In several European regions, the four-level intervention concept of the European Alliance Against Depression (www.EAAD.net), simultaneously targeting depression and suicidal behavior, has been found to have preventive effects on suicidal behavior. It has already been implemented in more than 100 regions in Europe.