Measuring the (In)security of Palestinian Civil Society Websites

In: Middle East Law and Governance
Alexei Abrahams Technology and Social Change Project, Shorenstein Center, Harvard Kennedy School, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA, USA,

Search for other papers by Alexei Abrahams in
Current site
Google Scholar
Etienne Maynier Security Lab, Amnesty International, Toulouse, France,

Search for other papers by Etienne Maynier in
Current site
Google Scholar
Download Citation Get Permissions

Access options

Get access to the full article by using one of the access options below.

Institutional Login

Log in with Open Athens, Shibboleth, or your institutional credentials

Login via Institution


Buy instant access (PDF download and unlimited online access):



Civil society organizations (cso s) are reemerging as the central reference of the Palestinian struggle at a time when cyber threats to civil society are on the rise worldwide. We developed a web scanning tool to gather security data on websites and web servers, finding Palestinian cso s neglect even basic precautions like encrypting web traffic or keeping software updated. Why? Evidence suggests this neglect cannot easily be explained by technical or financial constraints. Widening our scan to include Israeli organizations, and non-Palestinian organizations allied with the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (bds) movement, we find similar security lapses, suggesting insecurity is neither unique to Palestinian cso s nor does it necessarily decline as organizations enter into contentious politics. Our results underscore the sociotechnical nature of cybersecurity, while encouraging greater vigilance from cso s.

Content Metrics

All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 419 137 19
Full Text Views 23 8 1
PDF Views & Downloads 56 19 2