Cybersecurity

 

Increasingly editorial cartoons are migrating from print media into the Internet or cyberspace.  While still not proven to be a easy source of income, the Internet is a wonderful new source of broad exposure for your work.  Many cartoonists who will need this manual are in fact not full-time professional cartoonists, but people whose first love is cartooning.  In order to keep food on the table, these part-time cartoonists have other jobs, some of them related to illustration, art or journalism.  These part-time cartoonists are discovering what a wonderful and powerful outlet social media is.  You can open a Facebook page and in 15 minutes or so have a good number of your cartoons posted for others to view and comment on.

We all like to think that cyberspace allows us to operate with a great degree of anonymity and at a degree of safety.  However, the same influences that would have censored you or attacked you for a cartoon published in a newspaper will do the same in cyberspace.  If your cartoons are found to be too critical and too unpopular on the Internet, and if the regime you are living under has a habit of censoring newspapers and denying freedom of the press, the same influences will probably follow you right on to your Facebook, Twitter, and other social media pages.  Some governments are better than others on finding out who you are and probably where you live.  To be safe working on the Internet, leave as little personal information about yourself as possible anywhere on any of your social media, e-mail, Facebook, blogs, or webpages.  This is a good practice under any circumstances and is absolutely necessary if you are going to be posting cartoons that are critical or could be found insulting to people who take action against free speech.  If friends can find you, so can the regime or the fundamentalists who would want to silence you.

At Cartoonists Rights Network International we also encounter many people from university professors to the amateur teenage cartoonists who are being arrested and charged with crimes because of their postings on social media.  Some charges are as serious as sedition.  In fact, it would seem that the Internet is more useful to censors, hard-line fundamentalists, and others who would seek to censor thought and expression than it is to those of us who want to make those expressions public in the first place.  

Cyber-censorship is one of the fastest growing strategies of both governments and fundamentalists.  There are many bloggers who use cartoons to illustrate their writing.  They are being charged with crimes and many of them are in jail.  The cartoonists who uses the Internet and its social networking tools to promote their cartoons must be ever more aware of the risks that the Internet poses.

Your physical whereabouts and your conversations can be tracked on most modern cell phones.  Even the address book on your cell phone might be copied by a hacker who wants to know who and where your friends are.  An old-fashioned landline continues to be the safest way to communicate by phone.  The hard drive on your computer can be seized, and even though you have erased everything, the erased files on your hard drive can be recovered and used against you.   

Cyberspace is simply a tool.  Depending on who is using it, cyberspace is utilized as either a new source of freedom or of repression.   

Frankly, we at CRNI can't keep up with the fast pace of change of security issues on the Internet.  Internet security is now not only a major industry, but also a new theater of warfare.  Because every modern society depends entirely on electronic computing and the Internet to keep its communications industry and even defense alive, Internet security has become the next major battleground for warring parties.

Under additional resources below, we are including a link to essays written on cybersecurity and cell phone and social media safety. 

Summary:

  • Learn to give as little personal information as possible on your social media sites.
  • Learn how to disguise your computer's IP address.

 

Additional resources:

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