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PESHAWAR: Trainers at a media workshop have urged journalists to ensure safety of digital equipment, including computers, tabs and mobile phones, as well as safe online presence to avoid complications in daily life.

The three-day workshop was organised by the Institute for Research, Advocacy and Development on online safety and digital hygiene for journalists and information practitioners of the Federally Administered Tribal Areas and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa in Peshawar. The training workshop ended on Wednesday.

In this regard, a series of workshops were conducted by Iqbal Khattak, a journalist and expert on journalists’ safety. The participants from various media houses and human rights organisations from KP and Fata were briefed about the potential security hazards and risks concerning their digital tools, equipment and social media platforms.

The trainer highlighted the importance of secure emails, Facebook accounts and twitter handles and how unhygienic online activities could pose risks to the users.

The participants were also briefed about constitutional and legal framework relating to social media, online privacy and freedom of information. Extents and limitations of the constitutional rights such as freedom of expression under Article 19 and right to information under Article 19-A of Constitution for online information practitioners were also discussed. They were also told about the platforms under the Prevention of Electronic Crimes Act, 2016, to lodge complaints against online harassment and other electronic crimes.

Mohammad Aftab Alam, executive director of the institute, spoke about the effective use of social media platforms for promoting citizens’ rights and democratic values.

Published in Dawn, February 1st, 2018