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Defense Against the Digital Dark Arts. Choose Privacy Week - May 5, 2014 Eric Stroshane North Dakota State Library @ ericstroshane. Panel from Zach Weinersmith’s Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal used with permission.

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defense against the digital dark arts

Defense Against the Digital Dark Arts

Choose Privacy Week - May 5, 2014

Eric Stroshane

North Dakota State Library



Panel from Zach Weinersmith’sSaturday Morning Breakfast Cereal used with permission.

View this and other comics at:


86% of internet users have taken steps online to remove or mask their digital footprints

  • 55% of internet users have taken steps to avoid observation by specific people, organizations, or the government

From this September 5, 2013, Pew Research Internet Project report:


September 1, 2009, Unshelved strip by Bill Barnes and Gene Ambaum used with permission.

Visit for more free comics and books about libraries!


January 20, 1953 - Joseph McCarthy becomes chair of the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations

  • June 25, 1953 – The Freedom to Read Statement is officially adopted by the ALA Council and the AAP Freedom to Read Committee
proud history of librarian resistance
Proud History of Librarian Resistance
  • DECAL aka “Library Awareness” (1973-1976, 1985-?)
  • CIPA (2000-)
  • USA PATRIOT Act (2001-)
  • SOPA/PIPA (2011 - 2012)
  • CISPA (2011 - 2012, reintroduced in 2013…)

Rights status unclear; image used at great

personal risk

Image in the public domain in the United States


Panel from Randall Munroe’s xkcd licensed under CC BY-NC 2.5

View this and other comics at:


“I don’t try to describe the future, I try to prevent it.”

- Ray Bradbury

Quote from Roger Moore’s article “At 80, Ray Bradbury Still Fighting the Future he Foresaw,” available at:

Dave Hoffman’s “Internet VS Privacy – A Helpful Venn Diagram,” licensed under CC BY 2.0from
all data you generate is personal
All Data You Generate Is Personal
  • Mobility patterns
  • Browser fingerprints
  • Search habits
  • Metadata

“Pervasive, end-to-end encryption can quickly make indiscriminate surveillance impossible on a cost-effective basis. The result is that governments are likely to fall back to traditional, targeted surveillance founded upon an individualized suspicion.”

- Edward Snowden

Snowden’s full testimony to the European Parliament (pdf):

Shirt available from:

the digital dark arts
The Digital Dark Arts
  • Casual leaks from sharing computers
  • Spyware and adware
  • Third party cookies
  • Keyloggers
  • Packet sniffing and inspection

Detail from katefarrar’s Dark Mark Wallpaper, licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0from:


Panel from Scott Meyer’s Basic Instructions, used with permission.

View this and other comics at:


Malware: software installed against your will with bad intentions

  • Spyware: malware that monitors and reports on your activities
  • Adware: spyware that injects ads

Visualize tracking cookies with Mozilla’s Lightbeam extension (Firefox):

Detail from “Delicious cookie!” image by Andres Moreno, licensed under CC BY 2.0 from


Licensed under CC BY 3.0 US, from:

encrypto patronum
  • Test how a browser handles SSL/TLS:
  • Test a site’s SSL/TLS configuration:
  • Get certified! Implement HTTPS on your sites:
    • Digicert
    • StartSSL
    • Or from a host of other cert authorities!
challenge vendors to reset the net
Challenge Vendors to Reset the Net
  • Place statements in RFPs requesting potential partners to use HTTPS by default
  • Contact current vendors and request they enable HTTPS by default

CPW Programming Guide - Usable 52 weeks per year! (pdf)

Programming ideas from Cory Doctorow: (YouTube)


Elected officials directory:

  • House staff directory:

American Civil Liberties Union

  • Center for Democracy and Technology
  • Electronic Frontier Foundation
  • Freedom of the Press Foundation
  • OpenNet Initiative
  • Sunlight Foundation
base pac recommendations
Base PAC Recommendations

Windows Settings:

  • Enable the Guest account

Browser Settings:

  • Always open in Private/Incognito mode (for Chrome, add the -incognito flag to the shortcut)
  • Change default search provider to DuckDuckGo

Browser Extensions:

  • AdBlock Plus
  • Disconnect or Ghostery
  • HTTPS Everywhere
  • For Chrome, be sure to check “Allow in Incognito” for these!


  • ZemanaAntiLogger Free
  • CCleaner or a steady state/deep freeze product

Contact: | @ericstroshane


Playlist: (they’ll know you listened…)