Top 6 Digital Safety Tips for Undocu Folks

June 2, 2020

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En Español.

For immigrants, Black and indigenous people of color, our families, and our friends, it is important to keep our personal information out of the hands of those who want to harm us. Remember, we are in the work of protecting people, not property. 

1) Don’t engage with unknown hateful and racist accounts.
You will not move them, and you risk becoming a target for online harassment or doxxing (uncovering and broadcasting your personal information to the internet). When you engage, it will likely take you away from meaningful work and the mental state you need to take care of yourself and others.

2) Switch to an encrypted text messaging app.
Encryption protects your messages by scrambling them so they do not make sense to anyone who intercepts them. Signal or the latest version of WhatsApp are strongly recommended.

3) Use 2-factor authentication on all of your accounts that offer it.
“Two-factor authentication” or “2FA” double checks your identity after you’ve entered your password, often by sending you a text with a number code to enter into your login page. Facebook, Twitter, and many email services offer 2FA. Remember to also keep your phone number, address, and other information off of social media and public websites.

4) Use a Password Manager.
1password (https://1password.com) and LastPass are two examples (www.lastpass.com) of good password managers that will help you keep track of multiple complex passwords in a way that is more secure than simply using your browser’s password saver.

5) If there is a high risk of arrest at a rally, leave your phone.
Protect others’ information from falling into the hands of law enforcement by leaving your primary phone at home so that it cannot be confiscated. If you need to take photos or make phone calls, bring a camera or a simple pay-as-you-go phone instead. If you decide that you MUST have your phone, ensure you disable fingerprint and/or facial recognition unlock.

6) Keep your location and status safe.
Remove geo-tagging from your posts, and do not post your participation in real time, wait until after the protest. If you plan on posting photos with others, ask for consent first.

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