February, 2015

Stories from February, 2015

Iran Reacts to the Latest Snowden Leak on SIM Card Hacks

Iran's Minister of Information and Communication Technologies told Iran's semi-official Fars News Agency that he urges all state employees and ordinary Iranians to rely on their landlines for most communications.

Digital Citizen 2.4

Digital Citizen is a biweekly review of news, policy, and research on human rights and technology in the Arab World. Last month, a horrific attack on the Paris offices of...

Netizen Report: US Loosens Tech Restrictions on Sudan. But Is It Enough?

Words from jailed bloggers past and present, and privacy on the red carpet.

Belarus Bans Tor and Other Anonymizers

Belarus is banning anonymizers, typically used to circumvent government censorship and reach online resources banned inside the country, including many of the opposition websites.

The Dress Rehearsal for the Belarusian Crackdown

"Belaruskaya Pravda" chief editor Yuri Dubina says the recent crackdown in Belarus on independent online media is only "the dress rehearsal" before the presidential election this November.

A Love Letter to Jailed Syrian-Palestinian Bassel Khartabil

As the ongoing strife in Syria fades from international headlines, Leila Nachawati writes an appeal inspired by a love letter to jailed blogger Bassel Safadi written on Valentine's Day.

Egyptian Blogger Alaa Abd El Fattah Sentenced to Five Years in Jail

Prominent Egyptian activist and blogger Alaa Abd El Fattah, an icon of the Egyptian revolution, was sentenced to five years in prison today.

US Government Eases Sanctions to Allow Export of Personal Communications Tools to Sudan

The US government has issued a general license amending sanctions on Sudan to allow the export of certain personal communications technologies.

Ali Abdulemam: ‘I Have Not Lost My Identity. I Am Bahraini.’

In late January, the government of Bahrain revoked the citizenship of blogger Ali Abdulemam, along with that of 71 other Bahrainis, many of them journalists and activists.

Your Mobile Privacy is Under Threat Because of US and UK Spies

"The NSA and GCHQ covertly stole millions of encryption keys used to protect your mobile phone communications."

Cuba Announces New IT Policy and Does Not Mention Internet Access

ICT use and access is one of the talking points in the process of normalizing relations between Cuba and the United States.

Netizen Report: Can Tibetan Users Trust Facebook?

Social media censorship continues in China, Bosnia and Herzegovina re-defines the Internet as "public space", and the UK outlaws revenge porn.

Twitter’s Transparency Report: Can It Help Hold Arab Governments to Account?

If Twitter is adhering to local laws, users should know which local laws are being invoked, both to collect the data and in the cases to which they are related.

Advocates Petition UN to Intervene on Jailed Ethiopian Bloggers’ Behalf

Advocates argue that the Ethiopian government's imprisonment of these individuals on spurious terror charges is arbitrary and illegal.

The Western Hemisphere's Deadliest Country for Journalists

Mexico received the second lowest ranking (after Cuba) in the Americas on the World Press Freedom Index for in 2014.

Wave of Arrests in France for ‘Advocating Terrorism’ After Charlie Hebdo Attack

Since the attacks last January, over 100 criminal charges have been filed for terrorism advocacy in France, occasionally against minors, oftentimes for reasons that have little to do with the...

Russia Says You Can't Mention Ukrainian Nationalists, Unless You Say They're Bad

One permitted way to mention such organizations it to do so "in a negative light, ascribing them characteristics like 'radical,' 'extremist,' or 'nationalist.'"

In Putin's Russia, a Retweet Can Lead to a Jail Term

Even a retweet of an image or a republished post may cost Russian citizens unfettered access to the Internet—and often, their freedom.

Netizen Report: Mass Surveillance Violates Human Rights, Says UK Tribunal

This week, Iraq sets stiff penalties for insult on social media, Cubans snicker at Netflix announcement, and Samsung makes a new TV that watches you.

Turkey Cites National Security as it Cranks Up Internet Controls

Courts offer citizens occasional protection from Ankara's vicious war on freedom of expression and privacy, so government is looking for laws that bypass them.

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