IGF 2023 Town Hall #158 Prevention of misinformation risks among in-transit migrants


New Technologies and Risks to Online Security

Round Table - 60 Min


I want to host a session relative to a research project about in-transit migrants Central American digital security practices at the Mexico-USA border. Migrants in transit often interact with online information from adverse conditions; many times migrants are persecuted by criminal groups or are under surveillance by migration authorities; at the same time, they are often subjected to the stress of possible precarious situations (such as living in shelters). In this context, they often access the internet to carry out activities related to completing their journey, but they do not always have the conditions to take the necessary measures to prevent navigation risks to their safety. The session's main goal is to engage stakeholders and activists to provide ideas about a better way to build strategies to link the research project with local capabilities to enhance the knowledge of migrants about their digital practices related to their

In the first part of the session, we will present a couple of testimonia online examples of the digital risks faced by migrants in transit during their journeys. Afterward, we will propose trigger questions so our audience can help us think about how we can engage local governments and other NGOs to reduce digital risks for this vulnerable population. In order to balance the participation time, we will have stipulated a strict time limit of 4 minutes maximum for each person who asks to speak. We will also try to alternate in turns between online and face-to-face participation.


Centro LATAM Digital
Francisco Adrián García García, Centro LATAM Digital, Civil Society, Latin America


Judith Mariscal, Centro LATAM Digital, Civil Society, Latin America
Guadalupe Gonzalez, Colegio de México, Academia, Latin America
Paola Ricaurte, Tecnológico de Monterrey, Academia, Latin America
Daniel Rojas, University of British Columbia, Academia, Latin America
Eduardo Gonzalez, University of Southern California, Academia, Latin America
Ximena Mendieta Escalante, Centro LATAM Digital, Civil Society, Latin America

Onsite Moderator

Francisco Adrián García García

Online Moderator

Eduardo Gonzalez


Ximena Mendieta Escalante



Targets: According to specialized studies, exposure to disinformation and misinformation on the Internet may be associated with people reducing the time they spend consulting information on the Internet. This may have consequences on the technological tools that national governments have been implementing to manage migration flows, as migrants, refugees, displaced persons and asylum seekers may not trust the information available to carry out their migration procedures. At the same time, another consequence is that, in line with what is beginning to happen at the U.S.-Mexico border since the implementation of the CBP One application to request immigration permits, migrants, rather than completing immigration procedures by digital means, may prefer to cross the border illegally or with the "help" of human smugglers.