How to Defend and Promote Human Rights in a Digital World
There are several challenges faced by human rights organizations in the digital age. Among them are the importance of encryption and anonymity. Furthermore, a lack of oversight by authorities is a major concern. And, if we are to promote human rights in the digital age, it is crucial to protect the rights of our citizens.
Defending and Promoting human rights in a digital world
Defending and Promoting human rights in the digital age is a timely issue with significant implications for human rights around the world. In the current digital age, there are more ways than ever to censor information, monitor human activity, and manipulate our behaviour. This issue requires new, effective strategies to safeguard human rights and ensure that they are respected.
Increasingly, digital technologies are used for human rights advocacy, promotion, and protection. In particular, social media are becoming a powerful tool for exercising freedom of expression and documenting rights violations. However, they also pose a major challenge because they are vulnerable to misuse, misinformation, and other malicious activity.
The digital environment is ripe with dangers for human rights. It can also be exploited for criminal, authoritarian, and illicit purposes. As a result, capacity building organisations should consider a number of approaches to safeguard human rights in the digital age. These approaches can be broadly classified into four categories: governance and regulation, strategic communications, education, and technology. Each category offers unique opportunities and implementation challenges.
Access to information is crucial for human rights. Governments censoring content and blocking websites puts basic human rights at risk. Furthermore, citizens should have the right to control their own personal data and privacy. This includes ensuring that online services are available for everyone. At the same time, a recent European Commission report warned that almost half of the population of Europe is not digitally-literate.
Importance of encryption
Encryption is a technological resource that can be used to protect individuals’ rights to privacy, free expression, and information security. Whether it is used by service providers or by internet users, encryption is crucial to implementing these basic human rights. This technology is particularly relevant to journalists and other online media actors, particularly those who represent marginalized groups.
Besides protecting individual rights, encryption helps safeguard democratic practices. Encryption also protects the rights to privacy and association. Without encryption, information can be intercepted and misused by third parties. Encryption also protects the rights of individuals to associate with others, such as a friend or family member.
Governments and companies that restrict encryption are harming people. Those who rely on such channels include human rights defenders, LGBTQ+ activists, refugees, migrants, and dissidents. By weakening encryption, governments are limiting the ability of these groups to protect themselves from attacks.
The Human Rights Council (UNHRC) recognizes that the right to free speech and access to information are essential for the protection of freedom of opinion. However, governments are increasingly restricting access to information and content, undermining these basic human rights. It is also essential for citizens to be able to control where their personal information is stored. Additionally, appropriation of personal data or theft of credentials puts their privacy at risk.
Strong encryption is essential for cybersecurity in a digital age. Encryption is important because it creates a zone of privacy and security that protects individuals’ opinions, beliefs, and information. These elements are essential for the freedom of expression and freedom of association in our age.
Importance of anonymity
One of the most important benefits of anonymity is its ability to protect the right to free expression. As Julf Helsingius points out, anonymity allows people to process controversial ideas without having to reveal their real identity. This can be a cathartic experience for some people. However, anonymity can also make it more difficult to track down and monitor the actions of other people.
According to the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, anonymity and encryption are critical for safeguarding fundamental human rights. They allow individuals to express themselves without fear of being monitored or detained. In a digital world, these rights are crucial. However, despite the importance of anonymity and encryption in protecting our privacy, the threat of cyberattacks remains.
As the number of crimes committed online rises, so do the demands for stricter privacy laws. Considering these risks, legislators and internet companies are taking steps to regulate anonymity. However, some are worried that anonymity will undermine long-established laws governing information ownership and dissemination.
Digital technologies have also enabled humanitarian action, improved documentation of war crimes in conflict zones, and improved platforms for peaceful demonstrations. Yet, this same technology can also be exploited by governments and private surveillance companies.
Right to remove personal information from search engines
If you are worried about the misuse of your personal information, you have the right to request that Google remove your information. To do so, you must submit a request to Google with your name, email address, and last four digits of your credit card or social security number. Google will then let you know if your request was accepted or denied. It might take some time for your request to be processed, so be patient.
The Right to be Forgotten is a new law introduced by the European Union that gives people the right to request search engines to remove their personal information. Google has dedicated a page for such requests, and will evaluate each request individually. The goal is to make it as easy as possible for you to remove your personal information as quickly as possible.
Before you can file a request to remove your personal information from search engines, it is crucial that you know what you are doing. Google considers several factors when determining whether to remove your information. For example, it will look into the content type, the person’s professional life, and whether there is a need for professional secrecy. It is also necessary to provide supporting evidence to support your request.
The right to be forgotten is an international human right, but there are many differences between rulings and regulations. In general, the concept is controversial and raises many questions. Moreover, the right to be forgotten is likely to conflict with other rights, such as freedom of speech, privacy, and the ability to use a high-quality search function.
Access Now is a global nonprofit organization that works to defend and promote the human rights of users in the digital world. It does this by engaging with governments and private companies to improve digital privacy and autonomy. It also provides grants and support for grassroots organisations that are advancing digital rights. It also operates a 24-hour digital helpline where people who need urgent assistance can find answers to their questions.
The digital divide is a structural reality that continues to disproportionately affects the poor and disadvantaged. For example, people without access to high-speed internet are disproportionately low-income, people of color, and rural residents. This structural divide perpetuates economic, social, and political inequalities. The United Nations General Assembly declared internet access a human right in 2016, but there are still millions of people who don’t have access to it.
With the increasing reliance on the internet, it is more important than ever to protect basic human rights. Yet, in countries where six out of 10 people do not have access to the internet, violations of human rights continue to occur. Cities can help protect these rights by harnessing the power of technology for equitable access to digital services. Cities can also provide a secure digital infrastructure that enables people to connect freely, without fear of their privacy being violated.
Access Now is pleased to see a new resolution from the U.N. General Assembly on December 16 on the right to privacy in a digital age. The resolution, which was co-led by Brazil and Germany and co-sponsored by a record-breaking group of 69 countries, affirms the fundamental importance of the right to privacy and renews the commitment of nations to prevent abuses and violations of privacy.
UK National Cyber Security Strategy
The UK’s National Cyber Security Strategy focuses on developing an integrated approach to cyber security, building on previous work and pushing for new efforts to combat cyber threats. Its focus is on developing trust in the digital supply chain, protecting operational networks, and engaging the whole of society. The strategy matches the priorities of the US Cybersecurity Executive Order, which was issued in May.
The UK’s National Cyber Force will be established in 2020 and will be charged with protecting UK interests in cyberspace. It will be made up of a mix of intelligence and defence personnel and will be based in Samlesbury, Lancashire. The role of the NCF will be to counter and degrade cyber threats. Cyber attack refers to deliberate attempts to penetrate and hack into networks and computer systems.
The government has a responsibility to help organisations and businesses manage their cyber risks. It should set clear expectations and a framework of incentives, support, and regulation to support this process. This will help improve cybersecurity and shift the burden of responsibility to the organisations that can most effectively manage it.
In addition to government interventions, many civil society organisations and community groups are playing a vital role in helping people understand and protect themselves from cyber risks. Many charities offer targeted advice and support to vulnerable groups.