Internews Center for Innovation & Learning

Internews Center for Innovation & Learning
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Secure Journalism - Assessing Attitudes and Awareness

Digital security training is becoming a key offering by media development organisations around the world. Driven by real concerns of email interception, website blocking and ease in which digital data that is not protected can be accessed and manipulated - journalists are being offered training on encryption, circumvention and using special technologies to protect and secure communications.

While it is important to train journalists (and citizen journalists) on digital security, it is also important to ensure that the training meets the requirements of the journalists, targetting skill levels and local requirements.

This research activity aims to better understand the attitiudes and awareness of digital security risks among journalists based in Asia. Through this research, the activity aims to answer the question: "How can we mainstream or normalise digital security practice among journalists and citizen journalists?".

The following points outline the strategy to help answer the above question.

  • Evaluate the security awareness of citizen journalists and working journalists. Design a survey and deploy it using a survey tool (ie. Survey Monkey) or through one-on-one interviews, or a combination of both.
  • Assess the interest of citizen journalists and working journalists to apply secure strategies and better understand the tipping points and barriers to attitudinal change that may exist
  • Assess the use of the digital security tools, including specific mobile phone photography/video apps designed to protect both journandroid and iOS versions of the secure cam app that enables areas of an image to be blurred before being distributed to the news desk, or  blog, etc.  Obtain feedback from practitioners on usability, functionality and usefulness of the apps
  • Build a community of journalists interested in digital security who can be utilised as a focus group or knowledge source for future research and experimentation.

Because of the time-frame, we will focus on Pakistan, and better understand how we can mainstream digital security practice among Pakistan's journalist community.