Madeline Earp/CPJ Consultant Technology Editor

Madeline Earp is a consultant technology editor for CPJ. She has edited digital security and rights research for projects including five editions of Freedom House’s Freedom on the Net report, and is a former CPJ Asia researcher.

David Kaye on the Pegasus Project and why surveillance reform should reach beyond NSO Group and Israel

In 2020, then-United Nations special rapporteur for freedom of opinion and expression David Kaye pressed Israeli firm NSO Group in a public letter for details about its human rights due diligence and assertions that Saudi Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi had not been targeted with its Pegasus spyware before his brutal 2018 murder. The group…

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Pegasus Project revelations show added layer of risk for corruption reporters

Exposing those who abuse power for personal gain is a dangerous activity. Nearly 300 journalists killed for their work since CPJ started keeping records in 1992 covered corruption, either as their primary beat, or one of several. The risk was reaffirmed this month with the release of the Pegasus Project, collaborative reporting by 17 global…

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Investigative reporter Bradley Hope: Pegasus spyware revelations a ‘wake-up call for journalists’

Bradley Hope was in Abu Dhabi in 2009, the year the BlackBerry devices overheated. “If you put it next to your face it would almost burn,” he told CPJ in a phone interview. The BBC that year reported that a UAE telecom company had prompted local BlackBerry owners to install a rogue surveillance update disguised…

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Israeli lawyer Eitay Mack on bringing transparency to surveillance exports that threaten press freedom

“Many countries are using these technologies to put people in jail,” Israeli lawyer Eitay Mack told CPJ in a recent video interview. He was describing advanced surveillance capabilities, such as those that CPJ has documented being used to target journalists like Omar Radi and Maati Monjib, who were both jailed in Morocco in 2020.  Israeli companies like NSO Group and Cellebrite market equipment to…

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UK online safety bill raises censorship concerns and questions on future of encryption

The U.K. government emphasized press freedom this month when it published the draft online safety bill for social media companies, pledging that the bill would protect both “citizen journalism” and “recognized news publishers” from censorship. Vocal segments of the media not only welcomed the legislation, but actively campaigned for it. When Oliver Dowden, secretary of…

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New York Times journalist Nicole Perlroth on the secret trade in tools used to hack the press

The last time New York Times cybersecurity journalist Nicole Perlroth spoke with Emirati activist Ahmed Mansoor in 2016, his passport had been taken and he had recently been beaten almost to the point of death. “We learned later on that our phone conversation had been tapped, that someone was in his baby monitor, that his…

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The logo of Russia's state communications regulator, Roskomnadzor, is reflected in a laptop screen in February 2019. Research by Censored Planet shows how Russia has imposed its censorship model in the past seven years. (Reuters/Maxim Shemetov)

Laws, cheap web filters arm Russia to block news, says Censored Planet

When Daniil Kislov tried to view the website of Fergana from his computer in Moscow on November 1, his browser showed him the now-familiar notification that the independent news outlet he directs had been blocked by order of Roskomnadzor, the national agency that regulates the internet in Russia, he told CPJ. Fergana has been blocked…

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Police officers detain an opposition supporter as journalists take pictures during a protest against presidential election results in Almaty, Kazakhstan, June 10, 2019. The blocking of news websites during the leadership transition suggests that recent moves to control the internet are about censorship, not security. (Reuters/Pavel Mikheyev)

Kazakhstan’s move to control internet prompts censorship, surveillance concerns

A state-controlled internet service provider in Kazakhstan is requiring at least some of its subscribers to submit to having their internet traffic intercepted when they use specific websites–including social media sites, email and messaging services, and Google News, according to research published this week by Censored Planet, a project at the University of Michigan.

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