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From Cointelpro to Tiger Swan: Legal and Tech Tactics for Protecting Human Rights Defenders

 Lisha Sterling, chief executive officer, Geeks Without Bounds, and volunteer (cyber-security and vetting processes).

Lisha Sterling, chief executive officer, Geeks Without Bounds, and volunteer (cyber-security and vetting processes).

Lisha Sterling, chief executive officer of Geeks Without Bounds and a Frontline volunteer is speaking at Amnesty International's Annual Meeting in Rockville, Maryland Feb. 24 from 11:10 a..m. to 12:50 p.m. She's part of a panel that will focus on infiltration of social-justice movements. 

Lisha, who set up and managed Internet services for the Dakota Access Pipeline resistance camps in North Dakota, will focus on cyber-security for activists. Other panel members will emphasize how to deal with the legal issues that arise from nonviolent civil resistance work. 

She's going to talk in depth about threat modeling—how to assess the degree to which an activist might come under the scrutiny of governments and third parties (security contractors, for example) who'd like to diminish the effectiveness of social-justice workers and movements. "I'm going to talk about how do you know when you're under surveillance," she says. 

"I'll talk about how 'paranoid' you should be. If you're showing up once a year to a women's march, then your threat model is probably not that high. It's not something you'd probably need to worry about. But if you're attending meetings regularly, and you're effective, then that's a different story."