Contrary to popular opinion, digital security is not just for techies and hackers. As feminist activists, digital security is as much our issue as theirs. Women are abused online left, right and centre, our private data is hacked, we receive non-consensual sexual content, as well as rape and death threats. We have seen incidents of women being surveilled by the State, rape videos being put on sale and women’s voices being censored, which have even resulted in death in extreme cases.
Also read: Why Digital Security Is Everyone’s Issue?
However, the good news is, women are at the forefront of digital rights and security and are not just using digital security, but also creating feminist digital security guides. Below, I have curated the best of feminist digital security guides on the internet.
1. The Art of Digital Security for Pakistani Women
As part of their campaign Hamara Internet, Digital Rights Foundation released this feminist digital security guide for Pakistani women to build a movement to promote a free and secure digital environment where Pakistani women can participate in the digital world freely. They also recognised that although many guidebooks are freely available on the internet, there was a need for a local guidebook to cater to the socio-cultural needs of Pakistani women.
2. DIY Online Security Guide for Every Woman
Chayn‘s DIY online security guide is an easy digital security guide that anyone can use. It teaches women how to use stronger passwords, review social media’s privacy policies, find out if they’re being tracked or stalked and ways to combat domestic abuse. It has been published by Chayn with Gitbook.
3. Safer Nudes: A Sexy Guide To Digital Security
Coding Rights, a think-tank led by Brazilian women, published a fun zine reclaiming the ‘Send Nudes’ meme called Safer Nudes. The zine focuses on how to sext safely without compromising one’s privacy and anonymity. It is specifically aimed at women and gender and sexual minorities who are more vulnerable to doxxing, online abuse and nonconsensual usage of private images (revenge porn).
4. Security In A Box
Tactical Tech‘s Security In A Box is the most comprehensive digital security guide I have come across till now. It covers the basic principles, including advice on how to use social networking platforms and mobile phones more safely. The Tool Guides offer step-by-step instructions to help you install and use the most essential digital security software and services.
5. A DIY Guide to Feminist Cybersecurity
Hackblossom has written a comprehensive and accessible feminist digital security guide which even has a Cheat Sheet, which includes free and recommended technology based on your digital activities. The guide broadly covers five topics: anonymity, hacking, data, phones and social media and gives tips, tools and softwares for each.
6. Surveillance Self-Defense
7. DIY Cybersecurity for Domestic Violence
This guide by Hackblossom focusses specifically on domestic abuse and intimate partner violence. It empowers survivors by making them aware of stalking by partners through phone, social media, location, online activity, online accounts among others. It teaches defense strategies which include protecting passwords, using two-step verification, browsing privately, securing social media and backing up your data.
8. ZEN And The Art Of Making Tech Work For You
This manual by Tactical Tech is a community effort, built by women and trans* activists, human rights defenders and technologists. Content created for the manual was in response to the community’s requests for ideas and guidance they needed, but couldn’t find elsewhere. The manual broadly covers two topics: how to craft appropriate online presence and how to collaboratively create safe online and offline spaces.
9. The Holistic Security Manual
Another guide by Tactical Tech, the Holistic Security Manual is built on the concept that ‘security’ is a deeply personal, subjective and gendered concept. It is a strategy manual to help human rights defenders maintain their well-being in action. The holistic approach integrates self-care, well-being, digital security, and information security into traditional security management practices.
This list is by no means comprehensive, for I’m just human. If you feel, I left out an important feminist digital security guide, please post in the comments section below.
Featured Image Credit: Safer Nudes by Coding Rights