Surveillance

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WhatsApp Head Will Cathcart: The spyware industry is undermining freedom

Will Cathcart is the chief executive of WhatsApp, the downloadable messaging app used by millions around the world as a primary means of communication. WhatsApp offers end-to-end encryption, meaning messages shared via the platform are, under normal circumstances, highly secure—a feature that has made it attractive for journalists, human rights defenders, and other vulnerable users,…

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Spyware reform critical as at least 180 journalists revealed as potential Pegasus targets

New York, July 19, 2021 – In response to reports that at least 180 journalists were identified by investigative reporters as possible targets of Pegasus spyware, produced by the Israeli company NSO Group, the Committee to Protect Journalists reaffirmed its call for immediate action by governments and companies around the world to stem abuse of…

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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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German law increases government surveillance and hacking powers, removes protection for journalists

Berlin, June 16, 2021—The Committee to Protect Journalists expressed concern after Germany’s Bundestag, or lower house of parliament, removed legal provisions that exempted journalists from surveillance during terrorism investigations. Amendments to Germany’s Federal Constitutional Protection Act — approved on June 10, 2021 — give domestic and foreign intelligence services and the federal police powers to…

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New Middle East and North Africa Coalition to Combat Digital Surveillance

New York, June 8, 2021– From Morocco to the United Arab Emirates (UAE), governments in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region are using digital surveillance tools to identify, surveil, and silence dissidents, journalists, and human rights defenders. Launched on June 7, 2021, the new MENA Coalition to Combat Digital Surveillance has come together to end the sales of digital surveillance tools to repressive…

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CPJ joins letter urging NSO to act on commitments to curb spyware abuse

The Committee to Protect Journalists and eight other civil society groups today co-signed an open letter asking the Israel-based NSO Group company to deliver on its commitments to improve transparency about sales of its advanced spyware, and due diligence to protect human rights. Research by CPJ and other organizations indicates that the company’s Pegasus product…

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Mexico elections 2021: Journalist safety kit

Mexico will hold the largest elections in its history on June 6, 2021. Candidates will run for, among other offices, the federal Chamber of Deputies, governorships in 15 states, and mayor in hundreds of municipalities.  Journalists and media workers covering the elections anywhere in Mexico should be aware of a number of risks, including physical…

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Indian journalist Sandhya Ravishankar describes ‘conflict zone for female journalists’ ahead of Tamil Nadu elections

Political campaigning in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu has hit a fever pitch as the state prepares for elections on April 6. The contest is between political alliances led by the incumbent All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) party and the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK), the main opposition party. The campaigns pose heightened…

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A seated man in a suit speaks into a microphone against a backdrop of the EU flag.

EU adopts new export control rules on surveillance technology

The European Union yesterday adopted a new regulation on exports of dual-use surveillance technology by EU-based companies. The legislation seeks to prevent human rights harm, including in countries where journalists are targeted and under surveillance because of their work.  CPJ joined six other freedom of expression and human rights organizations in a statement welcoming the…

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World leaders should regulate spyware, halt surveillance of journalists

CPJ campaign documents ties between spying and other press freedom violations New York, March 15, 2020 – In light of dozens of incidents in which journalists and those close to them have been targeted with spyware, the Committee to Protect Journalists today launched a campaign calling on governments to stop the use of spyware and…

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