Digital Security Tools for Working Journalists

Note: You must register for this event on this page: http://www.eventbrite.com/event/4316151726

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Heard about the security flaws at Apple and Amazon that led to hackers wiping out everything on Wired journalist Mat Honan's computer?

Headed overseas on a reporting trip and worried about foreign governments sneaking into your computer to see what you're up to?

Or do you simply work with sensitive sources and want to be double-secret-probation sure that no one can intercept your digital communications?

Paying attention to digital security is no longer an option. Every reporter should know how to protect their digital communications and guard the information on their computers, to make sure nothing inadvertently falls into the wrong hands. Join us on Wednesday, September 19 as we learn from the experts about measures every journalist should take and tools they should use to keep their notes and communications secure.

This interactive discussion will include technical, legal and practical tips for protecting the privacy of your data in an age of increasing risk.

Admission to this event is either $5, $10, or a donation amount of your choice. All proceeds will support the efforts of the Northern California Society of Professional Journalists to host similar forums and workshops.

Important: Attendees must register by 10 a.m. Sept. 19, because we must provide Bryan Cave with the names of all persons arriving after close of business. (Very sorry, but we won't be able to make any exceptions.) Registration: http://www.eventbrite.com/event/4316151726


Panelists will include:

Frank Smyth, founder and executive director of Global Journalist Security. Frank is also Senior Advisor for Journalist Security at the New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists, where he blogs on journalist security. A veteran journalist and former Emergency Medical Technician, Frank has covered armed conflicts, organized crime and human rights abuses across the world. Smyth is an internationally recognized expert on press freedom, journalist security and related matters. He has testified before the U.S. Congress, the Organization of American States, and the International Commission of Jurists, and has appeared on countless news outlets.

Geoffrey King, Co-Chair of the NorCal SPJ’s Freedom of Information Committee. A First Amendment attorney, Geoffrey has represented journalists and individuals in both open government matters as well as in cases involving the illegal seizure of work product by authorities. Along with his SPJ colleagues, Geoffrey has at once taken an aggressive stance against police departments who have violated the rights of journalists, as well as worked collaboratively with senior staff to ameliorate working conditions on the ground. In addition to his work as an attorney, Geoffrey is also a documentary photographer, and has covered protests across the United States and in Great Britain since 2003. He also teaches Privacy in the Digital Age and Media and Social Change at UC Berkeley.

Danny O'Brien, Internet Advocacy Coordinator for the Committee to Protect Journalists. Prior to joining CPJ in April 2010, O'Brien worked as a journalist covering technology and culture for the New Scientist, The Sunday Times of London, and The Irish Times. He was one of the original staff members of Wired UK magazine in 1995, and from 1997 to 2007 co-edited the online newsletter Need To Know, which won a special commendation at the first Interactive BAFTA awards and NetMedia's European Internet Journalist of the Year award for 2001. In 2005, O'Brien joined the Electronic Frontier Foundation as their chief activist, later specializing in international advocacy for privacy and freedom of expression. That year he also co-founded the Open Rights Group, a British grassroots digital rights organization, and remains on their board. He is based in San Francisco.

Melissa Chan,[masked] John S. Knight Journalism fellow at Stanford and Roving Correspondent, Al Jazeera English. Chan's fellowship project is to produce an online toolkit for journalists to protect their computers against hackers and safeguard communications with sources. Chan got her first taste of journalism in 2003, working as an assistant to the executive producer of ABC’s World News Tonight after getting a history degree from Yale. In 2007, she began working as a reporter for Al Jazeera English and in 2009 was named its China correspondent. She covered the Olympics and earthquakes. She exposed Hepatitis B discrimination on college campuses and illegal “black jails.” And in May 2012, with no explanation from China, she became the first accredited foreign correspondent to be expelled from the country in 14 years.

This special presentation is being hosted by the Northern California chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists and sponsored by Bryan Cave.

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Reminder: You must register for this event on this page: http://www.eventbrite.com/event/4316151726

Join or login to comment.

  • Babatunde H.

    How do I get to be a member of the SPJ?

    September 19, 2012

    • Liz E.

      Hi Babatunde, great to meet you tonight. Looking forward to having you as an SPJ member. You can join here: https://www.spj.org/jo...­ -- don't forget to include the $20 chapter dues for Northern California; it helps support our great programs and advocacy work.

      September 19, 2012

  • Liz E.

    Fascinating discussion -- I learned a lot. And now I'm feeling totally paranoid about protecting my computer, emails, and the rest of my digital life.

    September 19, 2012

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