How Journalists Can Protect Their Computers From Theft

May 282013

When corrupt officials, companies with conflicts of interest and organized criminals break into the home of a journalist or into the office of a news organization, their primary goal is often to seize computers.

If journalists’ information is improperly protected, this theft opens them to the loss of confidential, valuable and sensitive information, such as contact information for sources, reporters’ assignments, directories, projects and research topics.

Many reporters make common mistakes, such as storing personal and work information on the same computer. This means that if their machines are hacked or stolen, not only are their professional contacts and sources at risk, but the security of their family and friends may also be in jeopardy.

Fortunately, by adopting a few preventive measures, journalists and newsrooms can reduce the potential damage of a computer theft.

Read Sierra’s full post, the second in his IJNet series offering digital security recommendations for journalists.


The International Journalists' Network, IJNet, keeps professional and citizen journalists up to date on the latest media innovations, online journalism resources, training opportunities and expert advice. ICFJ produces IJNet in seven languages: Arabic, Chinese, English, Persian, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish. IJNet is supported by donors including the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation.