For journalists covering sensitive issues in Latin America and the Caribbean, digital security is a must. However, in a recent survey conducted by IFEX-ALC members, journalists working in the region reported a lack of awareness and use of digital security practices. IFEX-ALC network's campaign aims to change this by improving journalists' ability to protect themselves online through the strategic promotion of digital security tools and practices. In the following video, Marina Walker, research coordinator of the Panama Papers, provides an overview of how to improve your security online.
Creating secure passwords with upper and lowercase letters, numbers and symbols and changing password regularly are all necessary precautions across the board for journalists, especially for those covering sensitive topics. For added protection, utilizing password generators that create and store unique passwords is also recommended. Tamoa Calzadilla, Venezuelan journalist with Univision Noticias, provides some advice on how to improve your password security in the video below.
For more information on password protection, see IFEX member Karisma's Safe Passwords section of their Geniuses of the Internet Toolkit
Given the rise in mobile phones as a means of communication for everything from email to social networks and online banking, secure practices are more important than ever for journalists' cell phone use. Utilizing a password including numbers, letters and symbols to enter your phone as well as your applications is recommended. Avoid sharing confidential information during chats and use applications that are fully encrypted. Nazima Raghubir, Guayanese journalist with Insight Magazine/Prime News, explains how to use effective password protection to enhance your digital security in the video below.
For further information on cellphone protection, see IFEX member Karisma's Encrypted Communications section of their Geniuses of the Internet Toolkit.
Protection of Sources
Given the risks faced by information sources in Latin America and the Caribbean, keeping your interactions confidential and safe is a must. One of the best ways to do this is by having you and your sources share PGP (Pretty Good Privacy) keys, which generates an electronic signature between you and your source, allowing you to protect your exchanges and authenticate shared documents. Joao Paolo Vicente, Brazilian journalist from Vice News, provides some best practices for protecting your sources in the video below.
For more information on PGP see IFEX member Canadian Journalists for Freedom of Expression's Journalists in Distress Toolkit
For a list of practices you can put into action today to enhance your security online, consult our best practices document below.
For further information on password protection, mobile security and protection of sources, we have included a variety of relevant IFEX-ALC member and other organisations' resources below (Note, some resources are only available in Spanish and/or Portuguese):
- Consejos de Seguridad Digital para Gestionar en Redes Sociales (Seguridaddigital.org)
- Manual anti espías (Fundación para la Libertad de Prensa)
- Amistosa Caja Anti Vigilancia (Derechos Digitales)
- Iconográficos: ¿Cómo te espia tu gobierno? (Derechos Digitales)
- Cinco preguntas: ¿Son seguras las contraseñas que estás usando? (Derechos Digitales)
- Genios de internet: guía para mejorar tu seguridad en la red: fanzines (Karisma)
- Genios de internet (guía para mejorar tu seguridad en la red): videos (Karisma)
- Journalists in Distress: Securing your Digital Life (Canadian Journalists for Freedom of Expression)
- Digital Security for Freelancers (Rory Peck Trust)
- Surveillance Self-Defense (Electronic Frontiers Foundation)
- Digital Self-Defense for Journalists (Open News)
- Security for Journalists: Part One: (Source Open News)
- Source Guide for Defending Accounts Against Common Attacks (Source Open News)
- Como combater a vigilancia online (Antivigilancia.org)
- Os grandes stalkers da Web (Antivigilancia.org)
Digital Security: Best Practices for Journalists
For a list of practices you can implement today to improve your security online, check out our best practices document below: