Thanksgiving is almost upon us here in the US. I felt it was a good opportunity to say thanks to some of the wonderful organizations out there working very hard to improve our security, protect our privacy, and defend our rights. If you believe in a cause but don’t have the time to get directly involved, then donating money to groups with the skills, time and talent to truly make a difference is an excellent way to go. You might even get break on your taxes, too. (Note that some companies have donation matching programs, as well – so you might ask your employer about matching your contribution.)
Many of these organizations will send you something for donating – a shirt, hat, sticker, magnet, etc. Display it proudly for others to see. Perhaps it will cause them to look it up or ask you about it, offering another opportunity to spread the word or spark some much-needed debate on these issues.
Electronic Frontier Foundation
If I was going to pick one organization that just does it all (and does it well), I would have to pick the Electronic Frontier Foundation. (This won’t come as a surprise to anyone who follows my podcast.) Staffed with top-notch technologists, lawyers and policy wonks, EFF is at the forefront of privacy, transparency, security, and free speech issues. They have been involved in hundreds of important legal cases, including an impressive string of legal victories. The EFF web site hosts some wonderful security guides, including tutorials and materials for people willing to teach others. They have created two of my most recommended browser plugins: HTTPS Everywhere and Privacy Badger. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg.
Saving Democracy, Fighting for Your Rights
Of course there are many other superb organizations that are fighting for your rights, holding governments and corporations accountable, and trying to improve our democratic institutions. Here are just a few that you might consider supporting:
- Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC)
- Fight for the Future
- Common Cause
- Verified Voting
- American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU)
- Brennan Center for Justice
You can find these and other great security and privacy links on my Resources page.