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OTF Monthly Report for February 2015

| By: Dan McDevitt

In February, OTF continued to sign numerous contracts bolstering its active portfolio of more than 40 projects and initiatives that increase global Internet freedom.

Notable accomplishments

  • The Guardian Project has created the first complete, reproducible mobile application distribution process using F-Droid and serving as an alternative to the Google Play store. This will enable Android users in countries where access to privacy and security apps via Play store are blocked to retrieve those downloads.

  • The Tor team released Tor Browser 4.0.4, which features important security updates to Firefox and contains updates to NoScript, HTTPS-Everywhere, and OpenSSL.

  • GlobaLeaks has been deployed in Ukraine, enabling anyone who finds evidence of corrupt activities to submit them securely to Ukrainian journalists.

  • The Localization Lab now has 37 projects with more than 3,000 participating individuals contributing to the submission and verification of over 394,000 translated words into over 200 languages and dialects.

  • OTF Red Team received four new requests for audits in the month of February and completed two others, Mobile Self Defense and Martus.

  • ICFP Fellow Abbas Razaghpanah kicked off his project developing ICLab, a platform for rigorous and repeatable measurements of online information controls.

  • OTF has supported the build of a WeChat Detector since last October, and during the reporting period, we have refined the software, stabilized the system, and improved the accuracy of its detection. We also generated a blog that automatically posts newly censored WeChat postings and have expanded testing, to ensure the continued stability of this system and accuracy of its detection, to 4 times a day. To date, the WeChat Detector documented 255 articles that censored from WeChat service.

  • OTF’s Bug Bounty program awarded 3 bounties in February through the HackerOne.com website. This was a pilot program in which White Hat Hackers help organizations find bugs in their websites and applications and has started to be offered to OTF projects as a service.

  • Secure Usability Fellow Joseph Bonneau spoke on “innovation in end-to-end encrypted communications” at the NIST Cybersecurity and Consumer Protection Summit at Stanford University, including his work on EFF’s Secure Messaging Scorecard, which ranks the most secure messaging apps. Notably, OTF-funded secure messaging applications are among the highest ranked apps in this rubric.

Select news collected by OTF from the month of February. Get the full feed live @OpenTechFund

Belarus Bans Tor and Other Anonymizers | Global Voices

China censorship sweep deletes more than 60,000 Internet accounts | Reuters

Netizen Report: Can Tibetan Users Trust Facebook? | Global Voices Advocacy

Meet Babar, a New Malware Almost Certainly Created by France | Motherboard

Stubborn Web Wizards in North Carolina Defeat China’s Censorship | Epoch Times

VPN and Tor Ban Looming on the Horizon for Russia | TorrentFreak

Turkey Cites National Security as it Cranks Up Internet Controls | Global Voices

The dangerous ambiguity of communications encryption rules in Colombia | Digital Rights LAC

Why Internet users all around the world should be worried about China’s Great Firewall | Washington Post

This Man Is Teaching Syrians To Defend Themselves Against Their Many Digital Enemies | Forbes

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