Stephanie Hankey talks about Tactical Technology Collective
Tactical Tech works to give rights advocates working with marginalised communities the tools and tactics they need for effective advocacy . We work with Human Rights Defenders, anti-corruption advocates and independent journalists who deal with freedom of expression issues as a means to an end Tactical Tech's Digital Security program - Started in 2004 - In partnership with Frontline Human Rights Defenders - Focused on making Rights advocates aware of their security vulnerabilities and providing them with the skills and tools to work as safely as possible
1,554 toolkits distributed and downloaded in 2007 (more copied) 165,000 visits to the toolkit website in 2007 Toolkit “ in-a-box”, “on-line” and “on-a-stick” - Attempt to pool expertise of leading practitioners - Peer review (language + expert teams) - Available in 5 languages (French, Spanish, Arabic Russian and English) translated and localised. Covering; anonymity and circumvention, but also... - keeping your computer safe and stable - communicating privately - keeping data confidential and backed-up - mobile security - working from an internet cafe New version to be launched in September 2008
Training - Four experts/trainers in the core project team - Network of 14 trainers During 2007 7 dedicated workshops 257 advocates trained Nearly 1500 advocates and independent journalists trained to date Trainings in... Belarus, Former Soviet Union, Uganda, Kenya, DRC, Uzbekistan, Ethiopia, Indonesia, Iran, Syria, Tunisia Thailand/Burmese, Yemen and many global events Publishing this curricula at the end of 2008
Reaching rights advocates working on the ground: Giving them the tips, tools and tactics they need to do their work Why we train (tooklits and workshops) and some of the things we've learnt... 1. Helping advocates find solutions There is a percentage of the internet that knows about circumvention and a percentage who does not - Many HRDs don't know, don't move in those circles, but are facing the same challenges as bloggers e.g. Tunisian group hadn't been able to access their website for 5 yrs
2. Problems with using tools - Knowing which tools to use, where and when - Tools don't always work; important to be able to help advocates trouble shoot and show them what it looks like - Rumours; people say its broken or can be traced, people don't know if it's really safe - Censorship can be opaque or inconsistent; for example different ISPs or points of access blocked - There is safety in numbers; if your going to stick your neck out, helpful to know that others are doing it too - People don't always have contacts e.g. Psiphon, trainer can act as a point of contact, we depend on TOR as it is less dependent on social networks, but it is more complicated to use.
3. Helping to make the tools available and usable - localisation of tools and materials - but also working with developers giving them feedback (they listen, we hope!, because our feedback is based on use in the field, and the feedback of people who use their technology)
4. Helping advocates make their own decisions Giving advocates enough understanding so that they can decide how to use digital security for themselves – how it works, what's possible, when they should rely on it, when not, build their confidence, and help them to make their own decisions.
5. Content censorship – the blessing and the curse of web 2.0 The tools that are the easiest to use are the ones most likely to be blocked or content taken down. Services have been a great breakthrough, but for most of the HRD's we work with they are not a viable option. Sex Worker Health and Rights Advocates
6. Freedom of expression and self censorship Shouldn't forget that HRDs and advocates share information, publish and organise a lot still through non-web formats. Email and IM, increasingly by mobiles We give people alternatives like riseup.net, vaultletsoft and pidgin 7. Anonymity – hosting your own content Trying to host content anonymously is difficult and there are hidden challenges to this (e.g. – contacting the owners of the site)