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In the loop

In the Loop is our monthly newsletter, sharing our own news as well as some of the stories we've tweeted in the last month.

Tactical Tech news and events

Tactical Tech releases, events, and press

Releases (3)

  • Two new reports on the use of data in elections in india and chile

    Written in collaboration with local partners, these two reports are part of a Tactical Tech series called The Influence Industry which looks at how, why and by what means data is used in poltical processes around the world.

    If you want to read more, you can head to our Our Data Our Selves website to explore the rest of the series.


  • New tactics guides on security-in-a-box

    Security-in-a-Box have just released six updated English Tactics Guides on themes such as protecting yourself from malware attacks, maintaining strong passwords and using your smart phone securely. The Tactic Guides provide general advice about digital security. Later this year there will be a guide on how to 'Protect the Sensitive Files on Your Device' and 30 translated Tactics Guides in Spanish, Russian, Arabic and Bahasa Indonesia. On the website you'll also find 125 Tool Guides that were updated and translated last year, that walk visitors through the process of installing, configuring and using specific, free and open-source digital security tools.


  • Open calls closing this month

    PROTOTYPE FUND APPLICATIONS OPEN - The fifth call for The Prototype Fund is open for applications. This time, the focus is on Machine Learning and other future technologies, and they're looking specifically for open source tools that foster Artificial Intelligence or other emerging technologies. They also fund projects from other fields of civic tech, data literacy, software infrastructure and data security. Applicants can be developers and small teams that have their residence in Germany. Projects must be Open Source and can receive up to 47,500 Euro. Apply by 30 September by answering eight short questions.

    (UN-)LEARNING PLACE: OPEN CALL - Parallel to the launch of Haus der Kulteren der Welt (Berlin) new long-term project "Das Neue Alphabet", the (Un-)Learning Place will search for new methods of learning and unlearning. Graduate students, activists, authors and others can now apply to test new forms of resistance against classification and ordering systems. In partnership with Tactical Tech, Each One Teach One (EOTO) e.V., Raumlaborberlin,Fehras Publishing Practices, diffrakt : zentrum für theoretische peripherie, and others. Application deadline: 15 September 2018.

Events (2)

  • Das ist netzpolitik! berlin, 21 september

    This month is the fifth annual conference from digital rights organisation Netz Politik, tackling major upcoming issues and challenges for digital rights in Germany and Europe. (ticketed)


  • Where can you find the glass room experience in september?

    Our travelling exhibition on data and privacy is being hosted around the world this year. Here's where you can find it in September:

    To host your own head to https://glassroom.tacticaltech.org/en/ // follow our instagram

Press and media (2)

  • Gender justice activists are organising against online violence - and they need your support

    The burden of responding to violence should not fall on the most affected. We must do more to support these activists online, and offline. (Open Democracy)


  • What political parties are doing with our digital data [es]

    Coverage of our recent report on the use of data in Colombian elections.

Stuff we're reading

Stories we've found interesting in the past month

Activism (4)

  • The new organs

    The New Organs is a project by Tega Brain and Sam Lavigne to gather, archive and investigate the theories and realities of corporate surveillance. You can contribute to this project by sending in your own experiences of strange tech surveillance. (New Organs)


  • How to conduct an open source investigation, according to the founder of bellingcat

    Open-source investigation is a tool anybody can use; as it spreads, it will inevitably mingle with the sort of delirium and propaganda that Eliot Higgins has always meant it to cut through. (New Yorker) Are you an investigator? Take a look at our Exposing the Invisible project for tips and tricks.


  • Secure messaging apps comparison

    Confused about encryption, open source, and the so called securtiy of messaging apps? Here's a great resource for weighing up the pros and cons of 12 different communication methods including Skype, WhatsApp and Signal. (Secure Messaging Apps)

  • How to tell the difference between persuasian and manipulation

    It is endemic to the human condition that we influence each other in all sorts of ways besides pure rational persuasion. This piece highlights the instances where this can have a negative effect. (Aeon)

Provocation (4)

  • Ted talk: what your smart devices know and share about you

    Privacy and tech journalist Kashmir Hill and algorithmic systems investigator Surya Mattu talk about the results of outfitting an apartment with 18 different internet-connected devices and a special router. (TED) You can read the accompanying article here.


  • Phone numbers were never meant as id. now we're all at risk

    Services increasingly rely on your phone number to know who you are - and that's increasingly a problem. (Wired)


  • Who needs democracy when you have data?

    Here’s how China rules using data, AI, and internet surveillance. (MIT Technology Review)

  • Google and mastercard cut a secret ad deal to track retail sales

    Google found the perfect way to link online ads to store purchases: credit card data. (Bloomberg)

Illumination (4)

  • Why is google translate spitting out sinister religious prophecies

    Google Translate is moonlighting as a deranged oracle—and experts say it’s likely because of the spooky nature of neural networks. (Motherboard Vice)


  • How wikipedia dodged public outcry plaguing social media platforms

    Wikipedia expert, consultant and trainer maps out Wikipedia's design and governance, which are rooted in carefully articulated values and policies which underly all decisions. (Medium)


  • A private investigator on living in a surveillance culture

    The risks and trials of living in a world of no secrets. (Truth Dig)

  • Why do people share fake news?

    Image: Hacker Noon

    This academic paper uses active audience approaches to media consumption to investigate and critique the phenomenon known as “fake news.” (Georgetown Law Technology Review)