Digital Security in Aid and Development

Title: Digital Security in Aid and Development
Author: Rahel Dette
Source: GPPi - Global Public Policy Institute
Date (published): 18/11/2015
Date (accessed): 27/11/2015
Type of information: online article
Language: English
On-line access: yes
Abstract: Technologies are used increasingly in humanitarian, development and human rights. This field of work is sometimes abbreviated with “ICT4D,” or information communication technologies for development. But new technologies can also introduce new risks, especially concerning digital security and privacy. To make ICT4D more secure and safe, aid actors (or anyone working with technologies) can use “threat models” to play through possible attacks and hacks ahead of time. Being more alert to digital vulnerabilities can help prevent data breaches and devastating damage, which is especially important in the aid sector.

UNDP experts help Pakistan map disasters in real time

Title: UNDP experts help Pakistan map disasters in real time
Source: Medium
Date (published): 12/11/2015
Date (accessed): 23/11/2015
Type of information: case study
Language: English
On-line access: yes
Abstract: On 26 October 2015, a severe earthquake hit the Hindu Kush mountains which straddle Pakistan and Afghanistan. This is a remote and mountainous area, sparsely populated and difficult to access. Yet, within half an hour of the 7.5 magnitude tremor, Pakistan’s National Disaster Risk Management Authority (NDMA) had released a map on its website showing the magnitude of the earthquake, its epicentre and areas affected.

Discussion Paper: The Mobile App Divide

Title: Discussion Paper: The Mobile App Divide
Author: Mr. Michael Kende
Source: Internet Society
Date (published): 17/11/2015
Date (accessed): 23/11/2015
Type of information: discussion paper
Language: English
On-line access: yes
Abstract: The Internet Society Discussion Paper Series is intended, as the name suggests, to stimulate discussion around a topical issue of importance to meeting the Internet Society goals. In style, it is intended to be longer than a blog post and shorter than a full research study, and likewise, in substance it represents our emerging opinion, but does not represent a final Internet Society position. Instead, we intend it as a means to gather information and insight from our community on the topic. The discussion will inform our view on the issue, and will be reflected in a revised version of the paper. Please join us in our Open Forum at connect.internetsociety.org to provide us with your insights and opinions.

New Research: What are the Models of Mobile Data Services Available in Developing Countries?

Title: New Research: What are the Models of Mobile Data Services Available in Developing Countries?
Source: Alliance for Affordable Internet
Date (published): 03/11/2015
Date (accessed): 15/11/2015
Type of information: research report
Language: English
On-line access: yes
Abstract: A4AI just published the first report in our research series exploring “The Impacts of Emerging Mobile Data Services in Developing Countries” in the Philippines, Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, Bangladesh, India, Colombia and Peru. This first research brief, “Models of Mobile Data Services in Developing Countries“, maps out the types of data plans across these eight countries and lays the groundwork for future assessment of the impact of these data plans.

How drones can improve healthcare delivery in developing countries

Title: How drones can improve healthcare delivery in developing countries
Author: Barry Mendelow
Source: Quartz
Date (published): 08/11/2015
Date (accessed): 15/11/2015
Type of information: blog post
Language: English
On-line access: yes
Abstract: The advent of cell phone networks has significantly aided the way results are transmitted from the laboratory to the clinic. But this is obviously not applicable to physically transporting samples. Drones are potentially a solution to this logistical problem.

Kenya: Laptops for Schools Revived

Title: Kenya: Laptops for Schools Revived
Author: Isaac Ongiri
Source: allAfrica
Date (published): 13/10/2015
Date (accessed): 15/11/2015
Type of information: blog post
Language: English
On-line access: yes
Abstract: Sh 17 billion will be spent to buy to 1.2 million laptops for Class One pupils after the salvaged procurement was launched by the Information Communication Technology Authority. The laptops will reach all schools around the country in two years after the procurement was split into two.

New case study explores the different stages of the mobile money regulation in Paraguay

Title: New case study explores the different stages of the mobile money regulation in Paraguay
Author: José Sanin
Source: GSMA
Date (published): 12/11/2015
Date (accessed): 15/11/2015
Type of information: case study
Language: English
On-line access: yes
Abstract: New case study explores the different stages of the mobile money regulation in Paraguay. The case study is in Spanish language.

Cuba is using WiFi for short run portable connectivity

Title: Cuba is using WiFi for short run portable connectivity
Author: Larry press
Source: The Internet in Cuba
Date (published): 11/08/2015
Date (accessed): 15/11/2015
Type of information: blog post
Language: English
On-line access: yes
Abstract: Let's start with a look at today's Cuban WiFi, then turn to the question of portable and mobile connectivity in the long run.

Using SMS to Reach Schools in Five Minutes in a Conflict-Affected Country

Title: Using SMS to Reach Schools in Five Minutes in a Conflict-Affected Country
Source: Stories of UNICEF Innovation
Date (published): 09/06/2015
Date (accessed): 15/11/2015
Type of information: best practice
Language: English
On-line access: yes
Abstract: EduTrac is an innovative system that uses SMS for the real-time monitoring of schools. It helps the Ministry of Education better understand the situation in schools even in the most hard-to-reach areas in order to provide better learning environments for students. Since March 2015, UNICEF in Central African Republic has been preparing to launch EduTrac in close collaboration with the Ministry of Education.

FightVAW

In the following months, the Observatory will devote a series of blogposts to the recent winners of the highly respected WSIS Prizes. Every year, the World Summit on the Information Society awards creative ICT based initiatives from around the globe that have proved to effectively empower local communities with the help of new communication technology. Typically, the awarded initiatives represent a success also in the sense that they operate a communication infrastructure developed enough to be replicated in other local contexts.

What is FightVAW?

A winner of the 2015 WSIS Prize is Fight Violence Against Women, a support platform for victims of gender based violence (GBV) in Nepal. The platform integrates technologies of voice telephony, SMS, web and mobile applications. FightVAW has quickly become the central hub for addressing and handling the issues of gender based violence in the country. The platform has been designed to effectively connect abuse victims to the relevant governmental and police agencies and to civil society
organizations. The platform supports CSO-s themselves to share their resources and cooperate.

Origins

The idea of the platform rose at a hackathon in June 2013, co-organized by the World Bank, Nepalian web development firm YoungInnovations, and various other civil and governmental stakeholders. The hackathon addressed the question of whether there exist new technology based solutions that could effectively support the (governmental and civil-based) treatment of gender-based violence issues. Around a 100 of developers and stakeholders gathered and worked collectively on various ideas. The most promising of these have been integrated into the web and mobile plaform FightVAW.

The innovative side

FightVAW is an innovative platform because the features it offers make it possible to overcome several difficulties encountered in conventional support systems based on voice telephony. The conventional practice of reporting abuse was based on helplines and green numbers, and victims were supposed to get in touch with an operator who registered their case and reported it to competent institutions. However, this system was highly dependent on information bottlenecks, like operators’ actual availability (office hours, ) and efficiency (whether or not they report the case to relevant institutions). The FightVAW platform, by contrast, adds three new channels to the conventional helpline, for it can be reached via SMS, a web interface and Android based mobile application. Of course, the FightVAW system uses human operators, but it automatizes their work at each relevant step of the process. The system automatically records all incoming requests, it urges operators to catalogue them, and it automatically processes each case (eg. sends out the case to relevant CSO-s). Importantly, the system has a self-help feature as well, for it allows victims to get in touch with nearby friends and relatives in the case of an instant threat.
In this recently installed system, 56 incidents have been reported since 2014. On the whole, the developers of the system cannot claim to have created something radically new, instead, the truly innovative point was to identify all potential inefficiencies and bottlenecks in an existing system and offering a systematic solution with partly automated ICT technology.

Features

Among the most interesting features of the system, we find the followings:
- A 24-hour helpline that works via four different communication channels (voice, SMS, web interface, mobile app) and automatically records all incoming information on incidents
- A customised Case Management System which assigns incidents to CSO and government networks. The CMS is flexible, allows quick intervention and supports the cooperation of various civil organization representatives.
- A self help mobile app, which allows victims to communicate with their nearby relatives or friends directly in the moments of immediate threat. Once the app is installed on a mobile device, it provides the user with a quick and hardly noticeable method to SMS a preset help message to 5 connections. Alert messages are automatically sent out if the user presses the power button three times.
- A media monitoring tool that collects the coverage of GBV related issues in mainstream media.
- FVAW offers support for organizations of a similar profile in implementing the above system – which offers impressive tools, indeed, for the fight against gender based violence.

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