Guides

CR Security Planner

CR Security Planner is Consumer Reports’ free, easy-to-use guide to staying safer online. It provides personalized recommendations and expert advice on topics such as keeping social media accounts from being hacked, locking down smart speakers and home security cameras, and reducing intrusive tracking by websites. This tool builds upon the work of the Citizen Lab, which originally launched and managed the project.
Credit
Lead content creator
Impact
CR Security Planner has been linked or cited in guides, reports and trainings by at more than a dozen organizations, including those by PEN/Artists at Risk Connection and Access Now, and UC Berkeley Information Security Office’s Resources for Prevention and Response to Online Harassment. A white paper titled An Evaluation of Online Cyber Security Guides for Journalists by Kristin Berdan at the Center for Long-Term Cybersecurity at UC Berkeley wrote, “Guides like Consumer Reports’ Security Planner are effective partly because they take the reader’s environment, assets, and protection goals and concerns into account before dispensing advice.”

Street-Level Surveillance

EFF’s Street-Level Surveillance project shines light on the advanced surveillance technology that law enforcement agencies routinely deploy in our communities. Its goal is to raise awareness of privacy-invasive police technologies, limit how they are used, and hold agencies accountable for their abuse.
Credit
I wrote SLS in collaboration with EFF.
Impact
This work has been cited in 12 law journals and various regional and state-wide task force reports, trainings, study committees, conferences, and even a Supreme Court case, and in written testimony presented to the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology.

Big Ass Data Broker Opt Out List

The Big Ass Data Broker Opt Out List is a do-it-yourself guide to removing your personal data (such as your address) from people search run by data brokers, or companies that sell bulk access to people’s personal data, typically without their knowledge, let alone consent. The list is regularly updated and categorizes each of the approaches for removing data from the different data broker portals.
Credit
I’m the creator and maintainer of this project, which has benefited from pull requests and edits from dozens of volunteers.
Impact
Linked by Wired, New York Times, Consumer Reports, Vice, Men Yell at Me, PEN’s online harassment field manual, and Zebra Crossing. It’s also been used in trainings by Freedom of the Press Foundation.

How to Filter Out Twitter Trolls by Using Block Party

I wrote about how to use Block Party, an anti-harassment tool which automatically filters out certain tweets and lets you review them later.
Credit
I wrote this for Consumer Reports.
Impact
This piece was linked to in the Knight Center’s MOOC, “Online Harassment: Strategies for Journalists' Defense.”
Copyright 2021 Yael Grauer