The Centre for Investigative Journalism
The Centre for Investigative Journalism

Private Security Targeting: Igor Ostrovskiy in conversation with John Scott-Railton

(90 mins) 18:00 BST / 13:00 EST

As chronicled by Ronan Farrow in Catch and Kill, private investigator Igor Ostrovskiy found himself working freelance for Black Cube, a shady Israeli intelligence company investigating Harvey Weinstein’s accusers. After being tasked with supporting a botched operation to surveil Citizen Lab researcher John Scott-Railton, Ostrovskiy cut ties with Black Cube. He started his own firm, Ostro Intelligence, aiming to bring a public-service angle to his investigation work. Instead of tailing them, he now wanted to help groups like Citizen Lab.

As part of the Source Protection Programme Igor and John discuss the worrying trend of private security targeting investigative journalists and share strategies to protect sources and investigations.

Harlo Holmes

Harlo Holmes is the Director of Digital Security at Freedom of the Press Foundation. She strives to help individual journalists in various media organisations become confident and effective in securing their communications within their newsrooms, with their sources, and with the public at large.

Igor Ostrovskiy

Igor Ostrovskiy is an experienced professional investigator with a mindset, skillset, and determination to solve problems to help clients do what they want to do. Igor's professional experience started with undercover investigations in 2007.

John Scott-Railton

John Scott-Railton is a Senior Researcher at Citizen Lab (at The University of Toronto). His work focuses on technological threats to civil society, including targeted malware operations, cyber militias, and online disinformation.
  • 14 June 2021
Freedom of the press