Jon Camfield is a technologist dedicated to advancing human rights with over two decades of experience spanning the public, startup, non-profit, and social enterprise sectors. Jon currently works on Threat Ideation at Meta, leveraging threat intel to lead adversarial design and prepare for sophisticated attacks both against new products and based on world events
At Internews, Jon was the Director of Global Technology Strategy, leading a portfolio advancing digital safety for media and human rights defenders through training, the SAFETAG organizational security risk assessment framework, and tool development. Prior to Internews he led technology strategy for Ashoka’s Changemakers platform, consulted for a wide range on NGOs, and served in the Peace Corps with the Ministry of Education in Jamaica. Jon has an MA in International Science and Technology Policy from the Elliot School at GWU and a bachelor’s’ degree from the University of Texas’ prestigious Plan II Honors program.
I have over two decades of experience in using technology for social change that spans the public, private, non-profit, and social enterprise sectors. I am a co-author of the SAFETAG organizational security risk assessment framework.
At Internews, I was the Director of Global Technology Strategy at Internews, where I led our work on innovative, systems-level interventions that respond to digital threats to human rights. Under my leadership, we build and sustain multiple programs, including:
- MONITOR, a program that advances community threat information sharing and builds the skill-sets of in-country activists to detect and, through coordination with Internews and the private sector, take down advanced malicious infrastructure; and
- SAFETAG, an open source, capacity-focused organizational security assessment framework and global network of experts
- USABLE, connecting human-centered design concepts with digital security communities to lead a sea-change in vhow human rights and media activists, digital security trainers, and tool developers interact;
- BASICS, a project working to improve the diversity of developers in, and sustainability of, open source security tool development.
- A multi-year, cross-grant effort providing over $10M to censorship circumvention technology development, combined with creating a neutral space for the disparate developers of anti-censorship technology to build standards and community;
In parallel with these program outputs, I have ensured that our work is sustainable, transparent, and in the open, prioritizing open source tools, building content under Creative Commons licenses, and supporting the capacity of and learning from local actors. To enable this work, I helped to sustain and manage a diverse team and led proposals winning over $30M in funding since 2015.
Prior to Internews, I was the technology strategist at Ashoka, where I co-led platform development for the Changemakers platform for sourcing and accelerating social innovations, where I also bridged project goals and community needs with long term strategic needs to manage the development of the platform.
Before that, I directed the technology program at YSA and has consulted for NGOs on technology, knowledge management, and business process issues in Nicaragua and Venezuela as well as many in the United States. From 2002 to 2004, I served in the Peace Corps, where he worked with the Jamaican Ministry of Education on open source and educational technology and training projects.
I first worked with digital security tools in the late 90s as a core team member of eCertain, a startup that was an early mover in building secure messaging that balanced end-to-end security with HIPPA compliance and data recovery. I learned way too much about security, and accidentally helped found and run the first few DefCon CoffeeWars.
From 2002 to 2004, I served in the Peace Corps, where he worked with the Jamaican Ministry of Education on open source and educational technology and training projects. These projects included training over 3,000 teachers in basic technology and Internet skills, as well as repurposing an early “LiveCD” running Linux to distribute interactive educational tools and an offline version of the Ministry’s website for rural schools. While in the Peace Corps, I also independently created support systems for fellow volunteers and their organizations. Two projects which continued after his term was over were a resource CD and a volunteer intranet. The resource CD was a self-contained training and software repository for school labs and NGOs across the island that provided free and open source alternatives and walked users through basic digital hygiene needs to recover infected systems. The volunteer intranet was a hybrid website and SMS group messaging platform enabling rapid dissemination of information among the volunteers and Peace Corps staff via email and SMS lists.
I have a Master’s degree in International Science and Technology Policy from GWU’s Center for International Science and Technology Policy at the Elliott School, where I focused on the applications of IT in international and/or community/educational development. My undergrad is from the University of Texas’ Plan II Honors Program, with minors in Spanish, Philosophy, and Science, Technology and Society (STS).
I have writing available at FastCoDesign/FastCompany and am a former editor of OLPC News.com, which tracks the One Laptop per Child project. One of my articles on the cost of the OLPC got included in Linux.com and slashdotted (?).