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February 28, 2011 7:59 AM   Subscribe

Security-in-a-Box. A complete guide to digital security for advocates and human rights defenders (and for you too!). It includes all the info and tools you'll need for anything related to personal digital security.
Mobiles in-a-box: Tools and tactics for mobile advocacy.
Message in-a-box: Everything you need to make and distribute your own media.
NGO-in-a-box: Set up you NGO using free and open-source software.

A collaborative effort by Front Line and the Tactical Technology Collective.
posted by lemuring (14 comments total) 81 users marked this as a favorite

 
I'm glad the activist world is finally discovering FLOSS. It's a natural fit for many reasons but seems to have been overlooked for quite some time. I'm assuming because the crunchies and the techies didn't often have a lot of overlap until now, when a lot of crunchies have grown up with this stuff.
posted by DU at 8:07 AM on February 28, 2011 [2 favorites]


Didn't Andy Samberg and Justin Timberlake already promote something like this?

I kid, I kid. This looks awesome.
posted by OmieWise at 8:10 AM on February 28, 2011 [4 favorites]


Excellent. I keep telling NGO/activist types about this; it's nice to have software and documentation packaged up that I can point them towards (aside from the last Ubuntu release).
posted by jaduncan at 8:34 AM on February 28, 2011 [1 favorite]


I'm glad the activist world is finally discovering FLOSS.

Well yeah, except that these in a box packages have been around for a few years already.

These packages are fantastic (and I've promoted them to colleagues in the past) but often lack a critical element - support.
posted by wingless_angel at 8:42 AM on February 28, 2011 [1 favorite]


Good post.

Okay, I've got this personal theory I wanted to get feedback on, which I came up with because I've been thinking about encrypted email alot lately, so it seems pertinent to this thread.

Does it seem possible to anyone else, especially any lawyer-types reading the thread, that it could be legal to snoop on unencrypted email in the U.S.? Or at least, that maybe it's a gray area now which is intentionally a gray area and may become clearly legal at some point in the future.

What makes me curious about it is all of the Carnivore stuff that the government did back in the day and presumably are still doing, and how I've never heard of any sorts of lawsuits about that. (But maybe there have been and I just haven't heard of them?)

The thing is, overall, that back in the nineties there was constant talk about "gray areas" of the law that were new issues relative to "cyberspace" (I feel so old to even use that word) and which were causing legal types to go all Unfrozen Caveman Lawyer, Your world frightens and confuses me! But we're a decade into the 21st century now and it seems rather conspicuous and odd the way that some of these things appear to still be unresolved legal gray areas, so I'm wondering if the ambiguity is intentional in some cases because it helps the government or other powers that be, somehow.
posted by XMLicious at 9:01 AM on February 28, 2011


Well yeah, except that these in a box packages have been around for a few years already.

I'm speaking relative to the decades FLOSS has been around.
posted by DU at 9:07 AM on February 28, 2011


wingless_angel said: "These packages are fantastic (and I've promoted them to colleagues in the past) but often lack a critical element - support."

I think the Security-in-a-Box site offers a pretty solid step-by-step guide to securing a personal computer locally and over the internet. It's valid today, as it was five years ago. Also, I'd like to know which of the security tools on Security-in-a-Box lacks support. Avast, Spybot, Comodo Firewall, KeePass, TrueCrypt, Thunderbird, Tor? They're all definitely well-supported -and- really good.

(The authors have a number of other reasons for favoring open-source software which are explained in the guide)
posted by lemuring at 9:45 AM on February 28, 2011


Security in a box does not appear to be reading for boxing.

"The contents of this website along with all the profiled tools and documentation are available on CD for off line browsing. You can download a disk image of the CD, burn it to store it off-line or to copy it for distribution.

* Download the ISO file of the CD [Coming Soon]"
posted by Ahab at 9:51 AM on February 28, 2011


The applications themselves aren't downloadable from the site and are instead linked to hosting sites. I'm guessing they don't have enough funding (nor would it make a lot of sense) to host all the applications they describe on their own servers.

wingless_angel, if this is what you meant by support, then I do agree.
posted by lemuring at 10:08 AM on February 28, 2011


lemuring: Avast, Spybot, Comodo Firewall, KeePass, TrueCrypt, Thunderbird, Tor? They're all definitely well-supported -and- really good.

I'm not so sure about Spybot. It used to be good, but I'm not sure it's considered to be an effective tool any longer. Malwarebytes anti-malware seems to be the first thing most sites recommend now.
posted by Mitrovarr at 10:36 AM on February 28, 2011


I'm not so sure about Spybot.

I'd heard the same thing, but then nowadays I just dump MSE on my PC's instead of my previous spybot/adaware/avast combo. I have yet to find anything on my occasional "malwarebytes + something else I want to try to see if it picks up something MSE doesn't" sweep, despite my regular forays into the darker side of Flatulent Teddy Bear Wearing Overalls pr0n*.

*the darker side is when the Teddy Bear doesn't know he's being filmed
posted by Sparx at 11:02 AM on February 28, 2011 [1 favorite]


MSE????
posted by daveeza at 4:33 PM on February 28, 2011


Microsoft Security Essentials, I believe.
posted by Monday, stony Monday at 5:15 PM on February 28, 2011


wingless_angel, if this is what you meant by support, then I do agree.

Yes, this is what I mean. I work with colleagues in a broad range of places, and many of them have relatively good hardware (many have laptops newer than mine), but lack IT staff in their institutions, and training. There are hubs of expertise in a great many places, but the average person (as in any country, anywhere in the world) just isn't able to pick up software and install it, configure it, keep it updated and so on.

I want FLOSS to be a huge success in the South - but documentation is only the first step. It takes people on the ground too.
posted by wingless_angel at 1:40 AM on March 1, 2011


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