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Digital Security Basics for Journalists

| By: Adam Lynn

Medill National Security Zone

Journalists everywhere need digital security skills more than ever; we will need them even more in the years to come.

International correspondents have been subject to well-crafted, spear-phishing attacks in Asia. Foreign correspondents in the Middle East have had their emails intercepted leading to potentially fatal consequences for their sources in Syria. Yet, individual journalists. along with newsrooms and even journalism schools have been slow to even address digital threats, let alone take them seriously.

Moreover, mastering digital safety tools is hardly easy. In fact, some of the safest tools to use are also some of the hardest ones to operate. The website, Security in-a-Box (run by the Berlin-based Tactical Technology Collective and the Dublin-bases Frontline non-governmental organizations) is the best single source for descriptions of uses and operations of different digital tools. The descriptions of tools come with useful levels indicating difficulty of use: 1) Beginner, 2) Average, 3) Intermediate, 4) Experienced and 5) Advanced.

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