Tags: Polls | Pew | poll | investigative journalists | poll | spying | Sharyl Attkisson

Poll: Most Investigative Journalists Think Feds Are Spying on Them

By    |   Thursday, 05 February 2015 08:26 PM

Almost two-thirds of investigative journalists are convinced the U.S. government is spying on them, according to a new survey.

Pew Research Center polled hundreds of journalists in December, with the results showing 64 percent of them think Big Brother has probably collected data related to their phone calls, emails, or other online communications. Eighty percent said being a journalist makes them more vulnerable to being spied upon.

Seventy-one percent of reporters covering national security, foreign affairs, or the federal government think the feds have probably collected their data, while 62 percent of other journalists believe so.

Despite surveillance fears, however, only 13 percent of the journalists surveyed said those concerns prevented them from contacting a particular source. Three percent said they did not pursue a story because of spying worries, and just 2 percent have considered leaving investigative journalism because of spying fears.

Forty-nine percent of journalists polled said security fears have changed the way they store and share potentially sensitive documents, while 29 percent said they have altered the manner in which they communicate with other reporters, editors, or producers.

Seventy-one percent of those in the survey said they have either not much or no confidence in their Internet service providers [ISPs] keeping their data safe.

Fifty percent, meanwhile, think their news organizations are not doing enough to protect them and their sources from hacking. Forty-seven percent felt the opposite.

Former CBS News reporter Sharyl Attkisson has claimed the government hacked into her personal and work computers while she worked on several stories at the network, including the Bureau of Alcohol, Firearms, Tobacco and Explosives' (ATF) Fast and Furious gunrunning operation and the attacks on the U.S. embassy in Benghazi, Libya.

Attkisson resigned from her job at CBS last year, citing the network's liberal bias. She recently spoke during the confirmation hearing for Attorney General nominee Loretta Lynch, comparing the Justice Department under current Attorney General Eric Holder to bullies.

"They bully and threaten the access of journalists who do their jobs, news organizations that publish stories they don't like, and whistleblowers who dare to tell the truth," Attkisson said.

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Almost two-thirds of investigative journalists are convinced the U.S. government is spying on them, according to a new survey by the Pew Research Center.
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Thursday, 05 February 2015 08:26 PM
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