Journalism has been transformed by the Internet and the Internet has opened journalists to levels of surveillance that would have horrified George Orwell. All journalists should be aware of the dangers they face in the digital world – the emerging battleground.
These days it is not just journalists working in repressive regimes that need worry. Increasingly, outwardly-democratic governments are tightening control over the Internet and those who use it.
Start researching terrorism or other sensitive subjects and a tracking device will quickly be planted in your computer to follow you around and report back. It is all too easy for an algorithm to misconstrue your browsing activities and for alarm bells to be set off.
Not every journalist needs be concerned about this. But it is important to know how to operate securely should you ever need to.
So how can we safeguard our sources and communicate without being overheard? How can we conduct sensitive research without having to watch our backs?
This book will show how – without any real technical skills. Using freely downloadable programs and apps, you can set up secure communications, mask your identity online and browse and download anonymously, plus store any amount of data without leaving a trace.
Rather like spies in a James Bond movie, journalists have an array of digital tools to call upon, both to mask their identity and to provide real confidence that their correspondence, notes and contacts are secure.
Elsewhere in the digital world, there are smartphone apps that let you see in the dark or measure the height of a building. You can film and record without being discovered; send emails and texts that cannot be intercepted. You can access banned websites and take over and control public and private security cameras.
If that wasn't enough, the Deep Web is also a largely-unknown research and information resource, a goldmine of knowledge lodged in the databases of academic institutions, small businesses and corporations, research establishments, galleries and governments. If you know the right entry points, you can mine a rich seam of multimedia files, images, software and documents that you cannot find on the Surface Web.
No journalist in the 21st century can afford to ignore the dangers of the digital world.
"We need to master the skills necessary to navigate this dangerous cyber jungle," says Jim Boumelha, President of the International Federation of Journalists in his Foreword to the book. "Deep for Web Journalists is the tool to achieve that. This engaging book by Alan Pearce charts a path to online knowledge which should be compelling reading for all journalists.
Deep Web for Journalists - Comms, Counter-Surveillance, Search.
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