Last month The Cambodia Daily announced it was going HTTPS. In a guest post for OJB Joshua Wilwohl explains why they decided to go secure, and how they did it. (Disclosure: Joshua is a student of mine on the MA in Online Journalism by distance learning at Birmingham City University).
During the past year, The Cambodia Daily has witnessed an increase in government interest in monitoring the Internet.
It is common to hear attacks on journalists mentioned at these events, but rare to hear an old-fashioned hack like MacFadyen also talk about the “growing number of hackers being imprisoned”, while noting the commonalities of a desire for a free press, free speech, and “a free internet”. Continue reading →
This video, from this year’s Google I/O conference, is one of the best explanations I’ve seen on HTTPS with regard to publishers.
It’s worth watching for five minutes or so to get an insight into why HTTPS is so important not just in protecting users, but also in protecting your own reputation.
HTTPS protects users because it prevents others from seeing what sites they visited before and after yours, and what pages they’re looking at on your site.
Imagine a whistleblower checking your site or profile out, or indeed one of your own journalists visiting it using hotel or coffee shop wifi, and you have an idea what I mean.
But HTTPS also prevents hackers from impersonating your site in order to collect user data. I imagine most publishers will be more concerned with their customers than their sources.
For journalists who suddenly realise that their web browsing is public information, I recommend the browser plugin HTTPS Everywhere, which turns on HTTPS by default (where sites support it) in Chrome, Firefox, Firefox on Android, or Opera.
You could be forgiven for not having heard of John Henry Skillern. The 41 year old is facing charges of possession and promotion of child pornography after Google detected images of child abuse on his Gmail account.
Because of his case we now know that Google “proactively scours hundreds of millions of email accounts” for certain images. The technology has raised some privacy concerns which have been largely brushed aside because, well, it’s child pornography.
Sky’s technology correspondent Tom Cheshire, for example, doesn’t think it is an invasion of our privacy for “technical and moral reasons”. But should journalists be worried about the wider applications of the technology, and the precedent being set?
If you’re a journalist in the 21st century you have two choices: you can choose to be paranoid, or you can choose to be delusional.
The paranoid journalist assumes that someone is out to get them. The delusional journalist assumes that no one is.
In this post I will explain why and how every journalist – whether you’re a music reporter or a political correspondent – can take a serious and informed look at their security and arrive at a reasonable evaluation of risks and safeguards.
Don’t panic. I promise that by the end of this piece you will be less anxious about security, and no longer paranoid. I also promise to use lots of lolcats. Continue reading →
The project has been called IRPILeaks and, like the Dutch PubLeaksand WikiLeaks, is a tool for those want to leak staying anonymous and safe.
IRPI aims to use this anonymity to encourage leaks from people who want to expose misconducts of companies and public authorities. A list of risks they could face in the process is published on IRPI‘s site. Continue reading →