Digital Society of Africa (DSA) works to strengthen the resilience and ability of frontline activists; human rights defenders and other at-risk groups in the region to independently recognize and respond to digital threats and attacks. We seek to achieve this using the holistic security approach; through a range of activities including: organisational security audits; risk assessment; trainings, sustainable security accompaniment; security policy formulation and tech support.
If you are interested to get digital security assistance for your network or organisation; you can reach us via email: firstname.lastname@example.org
More details about our work can be found here.
We apply the holistic security approach to address issues of safety and security among human and environmental activists as well as frontline defenders. Our core values are People, Process, Tech – in that order – with the main focus of our endeavors being to effectuate positive behavior change and adaptation and retention of good security practices. Our ecosystem transcends the African region, targeting mostly English speaking people and regions and in particular, ones that are generally under-served
The security of an organization is the sum total of its individual parts. Establishing the status of your organization’s security is not only key to find out whether your systems and security has already been compromised, but it also enables users to stay on top of the latest security threats. Organisational security assessments and audits enable organisations to establish a baseline and understand the nature of existing security threats and vulnerabilities confronting them. If you are interested in talking to us about conducting an organizational security assessment with your organization, please get in touch on email@example.com.
Digital Society Africa offers direct support to human rights organizations in need of improving their digital security. We undertake in-depth risk assessments with human rights defenders; activists and journalists to understand and develop their ‘threat model’ – which then informs the nature of intervention and focus areas for training where necessary. Digital security trainings respond to the needs of the participants and seek to address identified security risks through knowledge and skills sharing as well as use of various privacy and security tools. If you are interested in hosting a digital security workshop, having us talk about digital security awareness at your organization or event or want to talk to us about our digital security-training program, please get in touch on firstname.lastname@example.org
Recognizing that behavior change takes time, where possible DSA offers longer-term digital security accompaniment to selected at-risk groups or human rights organisations. Over a protracted period, organizations are hand-held through the change management process. Our experience has demonstrated that a longer-term, participatory approach is the best way to support organizations to strengthen their security endeavors. This gives individuals more ‘practice time’ with security tools and behaviors, banking on the confidence of ongoing support. They are then guided through an organizational safety and security transition that entails among other things: holistic training; on-going advice; behavior change strategies and designing security policy.
Although not the mainstay of our work, on occasion, DSA lends its knowledge and expertise to important pieces of research work related to technology, digital security, digital rights and Internet governance. Below are some of the resources we have contributed to over the years:
State of Internet Freedom in Zimbabwe 2017 Report – Intermediaries’ Role in Advancing Internet Freedom: Challenges & Prospects
State of Internet Freedom in Zimbabwe 2016 Report – Charting Patterns in the Strategies African Governments Use to Stifle Citizens’ Digital Rights
Stakeholder Report: Zimbabwe Universal Periodic Review 26th Session – March 2016.
Computer Crime and Cyber Crime – A Framework for Zimbabwe: A Paper by Digital Society of Zimbabwe and MISA Zimbabwe:
As a team dedicated to supporting human rights defenders, DSA tests the usability of various security programs and apps before training with or recommending them to users. This includes existing and new apps still in development. Usability testing allows us to give critical feedback to developers whilst ensuring that technical solutions to digital security problems make sense to users, are user friendly and address specific needs.
We aspire towards strengthening the digital resilience of human rights defenders in the region. To this end, DSA invests time, expertise and resources contributing towards growing the network of a strong talent pool of digital security trainers from which to pull in Africa, to be able effectively attend to the demand in the region.