Digital Defenders Partnership at RightsCon 2023

Join us in Costa Rica from June 5 – 8 to share, discuss and learn about human rights in the digital age.

We are excited to meet the digital rights community again. This year, we will host two sessions and participate in many more to discuss the challenges of human rights defenders under digital siege. Hope to see you there! Check the full RightsCon program here.

Sharing practices in a global community of feminist helplines addressing gender-based violence online

Tuesday June 6, 09:00 to 10:00 (CST/CMT-6)

Feminist collectives and networks are creating local and regional helplines for women and LGTBQIA+ people facing gender-based violence in digital spaces. And even though they usually work with limited resources, these initiatives act on the front line to mitigate digital threats and attacks. In 2021, many of these feminist helplines began engaging in a global community of practice.

During this session, members of the feminist helplines community from four different regions will present their initiatives and discuss their strategies and the challenges ahead.

Digital Security and Reproductive Rights in Latin America and the Caribbean

Tuesday June 6, 12:45 to 13:45 (CST)

In the context of increasing surveillance and criminalisation, this session will address the challenges and strategies of feminist digital security consultants accompanying sexual and reproductive rights activists, organisations and networks in Latin America and the Caribbean.

Speakers will provide an analysis of the current situation in the region and map their needs as feminist digital security consultants in the face of surveillance, disinformation campaigns and proscriptive legal frameworks. They will also share the ins and outs of their work: their tactics to approach digital security in hostile contexts – psychosocial approach, risk protection measures, and other practical strategies – and the methodologies for documenting the impacts of their accompaniments.

Diagnose and Troubleshoot Digital Security Incidents with the Digital First Aid Kit

Tuesday June 6, 03:30 – 04:30 (CST/CMT-6)

The Digital First Aid Kit (DFAK) is a resource developed by civil society for civil society to help rapid responders diagnose and troubleshoot digital security incidents they are experiencing. During this session, we will present version 3.0 of the DFAK, explain how it works and how people can use it and also contribute to its development and maintenance. ​​​​​​​

DFAK has been developed by members of the Rapid Response Network (RaReNet) and CiviCERT in an effort to mediate between the needs of civil society members and of rapid responders: through a choose-your-own-story structure, users who are in trouble with digital issues can follow the workflows contained in the website to figure out what is happening to them and find either a direct solution to their problem, or a specialized help desk that can help them address the issue.

Social Media Hate Machine: Can Digital Peace be Achieved?

Thursday June 8, 11:30 – 12:30pm (CST/CMT-6)

Globally, there has been a rise in xenophobic discourses in society, politics and mass media. Hateful discourses are exacerbated by the internet. Social media have become platforms of targeted harassment, emotional manipulation, radicalization, extremism and even genocide. Has the internet, and social media in particular, become a driver of discrimination, racism and prejudice, or can will still achieve a form of digital peace. The aim of this session is to work together to build awareness and change attitudes, to work toward the mitigation of xenophobia and misogyny online and offline.