Security & privacy
Tom MacMaster’s masquerading as blogger activist “Gay Girl in Damascus” was harmful, say APC in a statement, and endangers the right to use the internet anonymously.
The recent revelation that the Syrian blogger activist “Gay Girl in Damascus” was actually “Straight American Man in Scotland” Tom MacMaster sent ripples through international media circles and left deep scars in the LGBTI community.
But why is this hoax so potentially harmful?
It comes down to identity and rights.
The US State Department has been practically throwing money at activists and entrepreneurs in an effort to build independent internet networks for citizens of repressive regimes. This comes as part of a wider US effort to help internet users, particularly human rights activists, evade government censorship and surveillance.
I’ve been a Twitter follower (aka ‘cyber-groupie’) of LulzSec for a little over a week and I can’t decide whether I’m amused, scared, or just plain aroused.
Like that guy who sits right next to you on the bus even though every other seat is free, the people at Facebook are once again “all up in your business”:http://www.computerworld.com/s/article/9217447/Facebook_stirs_privacy_ire_with_facial_recognition.
To the best of my knowledge there were no casualties.
Today APC hosted its event at the Human Rights Council’s 17th session. The event, which focused on freedom of expression on the internet, featured speakers from across the world — including special guest Frank La Rue, the UN Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Expression.
Efforts to mitigate violence against women online can backfire explains a report presented at the UN Human Rights Council. APC covered women’s issues and the internet at the HRC in a special edition of the policy and gender bulletin GenderIT.org.
Major international decisions are being made about the internet in the coming weeks – decisions that could affect the internet as we know it forever. This week the United Nations Human Rights Council will receive its first ever official report on freedom of expression online – and APC is helping deliver the message to the UN in Geneva.
The Pentagon announced recently in its first formal cyber strategy that cyber attacks constitute an act of war — and could merit a traditional military response.
Never mind the problem of attributing cyber attacks to a single, definitive source; even if the perpetrators can be traced to a specific co