How To Protect Your Information as an Activist

By on January 19, 2021

Being an activist is a very admirable pursuit. To tirelessly campaign for social or political change is often a thankless job. Without activists, the world would be stuck in its old ways as no one would hold the powerful accountable and continue to challenge societal norms. Activists have the desire for change, and they fight for it by continuously organizing demonstrations, performing research, and documenting information. They’re also heavily involved in their communities.

If you’re an activist, chances are that you rely continuously on the Internet and online communications to get your work done – keeping up with daily news reporting, doing relevant research, and speaking with other organizers. Having the ability to do all of these things freely and securely is imperative for activists.  

But have you ever thought about protecting your online activities? Doing activist work can mean dealing with sensitive topics and speaking with anonymous sources. If you do your work outside of the home, whether that be around your own city or on the road, this could make you susceptible to hacking and/or information theft. Public Wi-Fi networks are fairly unavoidable these days, but they expose your work to unfortunate risks

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Luckily, there’s a simple and low-cost way to secure your information. If you’re looking to protect yourself, your sources, and your research, consider setting yourself up with a VPN service. 

How a VPN Service Can Help

A VPN, or Virtual Private Network, lets users browse the Internet without their data and activity being tracked. VPN protection ensures that even if you’re connected to public Wi-Fi, you’re able to access the Internet anonymously. Using encryption technology to recreate a private network’s security, a VPN can help protect your sensitive information wherever you go. 

Using a VPN also means that the user can spoof their location, making it possible to access servers in different parts of the world. This is particularly useful if you’re traveling abroad in a country that imposes censorship restrictions. This way, you’d be able to view any website you need for research purposes, and also do your work safely if you’re in a repressive country. With activists often arrested for doing important work, restricting access to both your personal identifying details and your research is essential for safety. 

Anti-malware Is Important Too

Another way to secure your sensitive data is by installing anti-malware software. Malware is an umbrella term for pretty much any kind of malicious software that can attack your device. Even if you’re protected on public networks with a VPN, malware can find you through a variety of other methods like phishing – when a fraudster poses as someone they’re not to trick you into giving up identifying information. From here, the hacker can access a variety of data, doing whatever they want with it.

Both a VPN and anti-malware software can work in tandem to defend you from viruses, attacks, and other malware like spyware and ransomware. Stay on top of your privacy and identity as an activist with these protective measures in place.

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How To Protect Your Information as an Activist