Safety and security online is important for everyone, but it’s particularly crucial for journalists who need to consider the safety of their sources in addition to themselves.
Even the most careful and security-minded users can fall victim to sophisticated phishing scams. Reporters covering oppressive regimes or working in regions where freedom of the press is limited have been targeted by government-backed attackers. Entire news sites have been taken down by DDoS (Distributed Denial of Service) attacks. And journalists’ data is increasingly at risk from cyber attacks.
Google's Advanced Protection Program was designed for journalists who face these elevated risks, and provides the extra layer of protection they may need.
First, run a security checkup on your google account. This is recommended for all users, but especially for journalists. Then, ask yourself the following questions:
- Do you work in a hostile climate?
- Do you have sources whose identities need to be protected?
- Do you get messages about government-backed attacks on Gmail?
- Do you see suspicious activities around your account? (for example, password recovery attempts not initiated by you)
- Would your work be viewed as controversial by some people?
If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, you would be a good fit for the Advanced Protection Program.
The Advanced Protection Program is designed to safeguard the personal Google Accounts of those most at risk of targeted attacks.
Google Advanced Protection Program provides:
- The strongest defense against phishing
- Data protection against malicious and insecure applications
- Better vetting against fraudulent account recovery requests
- Deep scanning for incoming documents
To learn how to enroll, watch this helpful video.
According to a study of more than 2,700 newsroom managers and journalists from 130 countries, at least half of those surveyed don’t use any tools to protect their information online. We encourage journalists everywhere to take strong measures to improve their digital safety and security.
To learn more about protecting yourself online, visit the Advanced Protection Program website, read our Medium posts on digital security for journalists and watch our Advanced Security for Journalists Webinar.