diff options
authorsajolida <>2018-01-31 21:29:38 +0000
committersajolida <>2018-01-31 21:36:13 +0000
commitf3f12bb7429f063102a873d0a3b0aac0b40aff08 (patch)
parent513a290b0c84df2d9ef46747180c4f7beabd6f23 (diff)
Add summary of two longer interviews
1 files changed, 235 insertions, 0 deletions
diff --git a/wiki/src/blueprint/interviews.mdwn b/wiki/src/blueprint/interviews.mdwn
index 72cca60..4d78742 100644
--- a/wiki/src/blueprint/interviews.mdwn
+++ b/wiki/src/blueprint/interviews.mdwn
@@ -97,6 +97,241 @@ Tails if they had a magic wand:
- P7: Remove the need to configure the keyboard and language every time.
+<a id="Claudia"></a>
+Claudia & Felix, January 2018
+Claudia and Felix are reporters working in a journalists organization in
+Latin America. They investigate and report on issues such as
+human-rights violations, enforced disappearances, drug trafficking but
+always with a focus on the social impacts.
+Their organization has been collaborating with others on a shared
+whistleblowing platform for some years.
+Claudia has been designated by her organization to be the person in
+charge of the whistleblowing platform. She has an OpenPGP key to
+communicate with other organization on the platform but she only uses it
+for that. Actually, right now it's expired.
+Felix is a sociologist but he "likes machines" so people call him
+whenever a computer issue pops up in the office as they don't have a
+dedicated computer person.
+Most journalists in their office use Mac but their administrative staff
+run Windows.
+### Whistleblowing platform
+The whistleblowing platform was set up by a tech organization from
+abroad. They gave each organization some training on the platform and a
+dedicated laptop to access it only from Tails. The training was focused
+on the platform, so they didn't receive a proper training on Tails
+itself. In general, little technical support was provided after the
+platform was installed.
+Though the dedicated laptop seemed to be new, Tails takes 2-3 minutes to
+start. Maybe it's because of the computer but they don't really know
+because they didn't try it on another computer. All organizations
+collaborating on the whistleblowing platform received the same machine
+and some gave up on using it. They probably got the worse computer in
+the world!
+It was not clear to them whether it was safe against malware to start
+Tails from their personal computer instead of the dedicated computer.
+When working on leaked documents, they download them from Tails but do
+the real work from their own computers.
+The first year Tails worked very well. But then they started having more
+problems when the upgrades started.
+### They know they should do more for their digital security
+Their organization is aware that the stories that they are investigating
+require more digital security but they are struggling with switching to
+new tools. It costs a lot to change people's habit, especially with
+older journalists who are not going to change their investigation
+Their administrative staff have their Windows encrypted using BitLocker
+but the journalists on Mac are reluctant to encrypt their computer
+because it would make them slower to start.
+The organization is looking into switching their emails to a trusted
+provider but they are not there yet. They tried to get people to switch
+from GMail to Thunderbird but it was not adopted because people are
+really used to GMail and found Thunderbird slow in comparison,
+especially on bad Internet connections. So they tired to make people
+use OpenPGP on GMail with Mailvelope but this failed as well.
+The same happens with Signal, which is not as fast and reliable.
+But they managed to get people to use Mumble, hosted by a trusted
+provider, for their internal meetings.
+In general, even after learning from the recent [malware infection of
+journalists in
+It's very hard for people in Latin America to know whether they have
+been infected because they lack local people who can do computer
+forensics. How can you know whether you are being spied? Not to get
+paralyzed, people stay blind to these issues and keep on doing their
+work as usual.
+### What they dislike
+- Upgrades!
+ Several time, their Tails stopped working because of an upgrade. In
+ such cases they would get help from another organization collaborating
+ with the whistleblowing platform which has more technical staff. Right
+ now for example, their Tails has been broken since December and is
+ being fixed by them.
+ One of their Tails was so old that it was impossible to upgrade it.
+ Felix installed a new Tails and copied the cryptographic key to the
+ whistleblowing platform manually.
+- Some months ago, they had troubles with their local keyboard
+ configuration that was not always applied.
+- They once lost the configuration of their persistence and struggled
+ importing their keys back to the new persistence.
+ When configuring Tails, some options are shown but it's hard to
+ understand what they correspond to if you are not an expert.
+- They have lots of trouble connecting to Tor. It can take up to 15
+ minutes and Felix tried on different networks (in the office and at
+ home).
+<a id="Joana"></a>
+Joana & Orlando, January 2018
+Joana and Orlando are investigative journalists and human-rights
+defenders in Latin America. They work in an organization that
+investigates and reports on private companies in Latin America, fighting
+for transparency and accountability and denouncing human-right
+violations of these companies, especially towards local communities.
+They use Tails for online investigation: to gather data and visit the
+websites of companies and governments. They don't redact or publish
+their reports from Tails and only use it to gather intelligence.
+As a policy of their organization, everybody uses Ubuntu; except Orlando
+who prefers Debian. Some staff run Windows from virtual machines for
+some applications. Another policy of their organization is to encrypt
+all emails using OpenPGP.
+Few organizations in Latin America are conscious and concerned about
+digital security and it's still something very new. People started being
+more cautious after learning about the [malware infections of
+journalists in
+Mexico](; at
+least some journalists but not really the human-rights organizations.
+### Working between Tails and Ubuntu
+They use Tails on the laptops provided by their organization. They
+reboot into Tails to do their online work and switching is not a problem
+from them. They use an additional USB stick to save the documents that
+they want to share between Tails and their regular operating system.
+They use MAT to clean the metadata on these documents but the USB sticks
+are not encrypted. Since their Ubuntu is encrypted, they can't access it
+from Tails.
+### Working with local communities
+They often collaborate with local communities affected by the companies
+that they investigate. Joana and Orlando teach them about digital
+security, how to communicate with them, and do research online by
+themselves. Tails (and Tor) is what they recommend.
+But for people in the communities, Tails seems very sophisticated, too
+technical, only for spies, or too much paranoia. Joana and Orlando work
+on these stereotypes and fears but it's challenging because they don't
+have a technical background themselves. So Tails remains hard to adopt
+for most people. The communities also have little money and this doesn't
+help. Tails works better in the communities where they find a champion
+who's more interested in digital security and more into computers.
+### Applications they use to do their work
+For their investigation and reporting, they use mostly LibreOffice,
+[PSPP]( (statistical analysis
+tool), [QGIS]( (geographic information system),
+[Zotero]( (research sources organizer), GIMP,
+and Inkscape.
+They already have everything they need in Tails because they only use
+Tails for online investigation and data gathering and analyse the data
+on Ubuntu or Debian.
+For their communication they use Jitsi and Mumble (hosted by a trusted
+provider). They have Signal on their personal phones but people in the
+communities all have WhatsApp.
+They also have a Nextcloud hosted by a trusted provider.
+### Data loss and backups
+They don't have much in their persistence, mostly a copy of their
+OpenPGP keys (that they also have on their laptops) and some
+configuration. So it's not a big problem if they loose their persistence
+and they don't back it up.
+They used to have an internal backup server in their office but its
+hardware broke some months ago and it hasn't been replaced yet. For the
+time being, people usually back up their files from Ubuntu to external
+hard disks.
+### What they like
+- Cloning is very useful when working with communities.
+- Tails became easier to setup and configure. For example, now you can
+ install Tails from Ubuntu and Debian.
+- The verification to check that the ISO is genuine is still quite
+ complicated. Orlando managed to do it from the command line but without
+ really understanding. He also did it from the website and there it was
+ more automatic. He likes the command line instructions as it makes him
+ feel safer even if he only copies from the tutorial.
+- They really like MAT and use it a lot. Metadata and MAT are also a
+ good example to explain why you need to protect your data, your files,
+ and communications. A big limitation is that MAT cannot clean PDF
+ files which is a format that they use a lot.
+- They like that Tails connects automatically to Tor.
+- Olive likes that Tails is based on Debian because he's been using
+ Debian himself for a while.
+- They really like having Thunderbird and a copy of their OpenPGP keys
+ in persistence. Before that they suffered a lot from not having access
+ to their encrypted emails when they didn't carry their work computers
+ with them. Now they can start Tails and access it anywhere, even on
+ holidays!
+- Tails is complicated to start on newer computer which are much more
+ locked down by companies. One time, after trying Tails on the computer
+ of a colleague, it couldn't boot Windows anymore.
+- They like the manuals on the website, what is Tails, how it works,
+ etc. It's good to empower people who are new to Tails.
+- Joana once had problems with upgrade on a USB stick. She could do the
+ first two upgrade but then it was not possible to do the third one.
+- Some governmental websites cannot be accessed from Tor. Orlando
+ thought that the other browser (*Unsafe Browser*?) was added to Tails
+ to make this possible.
<a id="Daan"></a>
Daan, December 2017