Data security in an anti-science climate

Data security in an anti-science climate

As populism blossoms around the world, anti-science and anti-journalism attitudes are on the rise. These threats can range from harassment to hacking. But informing the public about science has never been more crucial: Climate change, advances in gene editing and public health crises like the opioid crisis are just three examples of pressing subjects that directly affect citizens.

This skill-building session will arm science writers with the tools they need to keep themselves and their sources safe from digital intrusions by hackers or even their own government. It will feature security experts who work with journalists as well as reporters who have experience navigating the world of digital security. The session will take the form of presentations from expert voices followed by a short Q&A led by our moderator.

The skills that attendees will walk away with are:

  • How to build their personal threat model, or evaluate the things that are of greatest concern for them
  • Language for talking to sources about communicating securely
  • Tools for making themselves available to sources who want to speak securely
  • How to choose the most secure devices and tools for doing their work.


The session organizers developed a resource guide based on this #SciWri19 session. View it here. Thank you, Kat and Knuvl!

Saturday, October 26th, 1:45 pm to 3:00 pm
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Boardroom, Nittany Lion Inn
Susana Ferreira
Laura Helmuth
  Health and science editor, the Washington Post, Washington, D.C.
Neena Kapur
  Senior information security analyst, New York Times
Kat Eschner
  Freelance journalist, Popular Science (contributing editor), Canada
Knvul Sheikh
  Reporting fellow, New York Times