Lara Bitar

A Brief History of Personal Data Collection in Lebanon

In December 2017, the Lebanese Ministry of Telecommunications, headed by Minister Jamal Jarrah, started taking steps to mandate biometric registration of prepaid SIM cards, allegedly for security reasons. The proposal to register SIM cards with biometric data was announced without providing a policy assessment to the public, or conducting a threat assessment and mitigation plan …

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#GenderTech Confronts Gender-Based Violence in MENA

   Feature image viaOxfam/The Media Booth,  November 24, 2017, Beirut, Lebanon: Arab feminists discuss how to counter online violence.   Is the internet providing more space for women to liberate themselves, or expanding the space for gender-based violence? To mark the international “16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence” campaign, Oxfam, in collaboration with SMEX and …

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Youth, Internet, and Technology in Lebanon: A Snapshot

Social Media Exchange (SMEX) surveyed 157 youths between the ages of 14 and 22 to develop a snapshot of how youth in Lebanon use the internet and the types of threats they face online. Our participants, from diverse backgrounds and with varying experiences, came from all eight Lebanese governorates and were split almost evenly between …

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Why Boycott Lebanon’s Mobile Phone Operators, Alfa and touch?

A self-described independent youth movement is waging what it is referring to as a “polite struggle” (الكفاح_المهذب#) against state corruption in Lebanon, taking particular aim at the Telecommunications Ministry. Fed up with the high cost of cell phone services, online activists are calling for a one-day boycott of the two state-owned mobile phone operators, Alfa …

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