On the 11th of October in 2022, the Digital Autonomy Center (Centro de Autonomía Digital or CAD), started a week long visit to Bogotá in Colombia, with the purpose to meet and get to know the work of various sibling organizations in the fight for digital rights for everyone. An additional goal was to open up connections with the academic community in the neighboring country.
CAD at Universidad Nacional of Colombia
Beginning the trip, Alvaro Paredes and Fausto Lagos - representing CAD - met with several teachers at Universidad Nacional for the purpose of sharing information about the work that CAD does for defending human rights, and also try to find ways for academic collaboration. In this first meeting, the professors leading the group Tlon-Uqbar were very interested in the work that CAD does, and invited CAD to actively participate in the Cybersecurity Summit of Universidad Nacional in November, 2022.
CAD visits Fundación Karisma
This visit to Colombia was an opportunity to meet with and learn more about the work that people and organizations do to protect digital rights. Fundación Karisma is an organization that historically have successfully fought many struggles in the context of digital politics in Colombia. They have positioned their technical voice and social responsibility towards public policies, but also closely helped supporting the cause of justice in the case of our technical director, Ola Bini.
The visit to Fundación Karisma was an opportunity for CAD to share its interests and worries in regard to the work that the two organizations do in the social sphere, but also to learn from the experience of years of struggle that Fundación Karisma has lived.
Many thanks to Pilar Sáenz for her very warm welcome, and for opening the doors of Fundación Karisma to CAD.
CAD meets with Colnodo
Through the visits to organizations related to the work that CAD does, with the help of Andrea Rodríguez (from the Digital Security School of Colnodo), CAD could learn about their huge work developed for almost 30 years. This work continues today with the creation and spread of strategies for digital security for organizations in the civil society. CAD is very grateful for the trust shown by Colnodo in sharing their projects and achievements. This is an important opportunity to debate this developing work and its implications for the protection of digital rights for everyone.
Conversation with the Organización de Comunicadores Populares de Bogotá y la Sabana
As a part of the Diplomado en Comunicación para la Vida Digna, CAD shared a space for conversation with the Red de Comunicadores Populares de Bogotá y la Sabana. The main subjects covered were related to the privacy and security risks that everyone is faced with in the context of mass surveillance that technology providers and world governments are constantly engaged in. We shared some practical advice, such as how to improve the use of passwords, how to secure communication and how to encrypt electronic email. We also talked about the right to privacy and how this relates to cryptography and encryption. This event ended with the expectation that CAD will continue developing activities to spread practical advice, tips and tricks and tools for the protection of security and privacy of everyone.
Offray Bladimir welcomes CAD to HackBo
The work for Free Software, open knowledge and digital rights is work with deep roots. It’s profound, and requires a larger view of the future. One ally in this work is Offray Bladimir Luna - a professor at Universidad Javeriana. He is a well-known activist for Free Software since the 90’s and is also the founder of HackBo (a community space that is meant for the construction of knowledge in many disciplines). Offray recieved the group from CAD to have a conversation about the technical work that both CAD and HackBo does - with a basis in community. The conversation quickly made it clear that there are many opportunities for ineraction in the sphere of technical activism for the protection of rights and the construction of community.
Without a doubt, this was a journey for learning and understanding the struggles and opportunities that social organizations working for the defense of digital rights face. But it also showed many open doors that can help strengthen the energy with which CAD works for the defense of digital rights for everyone.