Journalists are frequently at risk of being targeted online for their work. Media workers who cover issues such as the alt-right, politics and contentious elections, as well as movements linked to race or gender are at higher risk of being attacked online.
The U.S. Customs and Border Protection agency (CBP) has authority to search electronic devices without warrant or probable cause. Civil liberties groups are challenging this power in court, but journalists should be aware that current practice risks exposing contacts, sourcing, and reporting material contained on laptops, phones, and other devices.
Decisions journalists make in the field have direct bearing on their safety and that of others. The risks inherent in covering war, political unrest, and crime can never be eliminated, but careful planning and risk assessment can mitigate the dangers.
The dynamics of a natural disaster or extreme weather event are fluid and threats can materialize quickly. Journalists should research potential threats associated with the event they are covering and prepare accordingly.
Journalists face the risk of serious injuries while on both dangerous and routine assignments. In situations when emergencies lead to severe injury, journalists should be prepared to deal with medical complications in order reduce the severity of injuries and to save both their lives and the lives of their colleagues.