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Matt Mitchell      

Hacker, Technology Fellow at the Ford Foundation & Founder of CryptoHarlem

Matt Mitchell is a hacker, founder of CryptoHarlem, and Technology Fellow at The Ford Foundation. Mitchell is working with the BUILD and Technology and Society teams at Ford Foundation to develop cybersecurity strategy, technical assistance offerings, and safety and security measures for the foundation’s grantee partners.

Committed to using his vast digital skills—as hacker, developer, operational security trainer, data journalist—for good, Mitchell has worked in various capacities at the intersection of technology and social justice.

Mitchell is a well known security researcher, operational security trainer, and data journalist who founded & leads CryptoHarlem, impromptu workshops teaching basic cryptography tools to the predominately African American community in upper Manhattan. Mitchell worked as an independent digital security/counter surveillance trainer for media and humanitarian focused private security firms. His personal work focuses on marginalized, aggressively monitored, over-policed populations in the United States.

Formerly the Director of Digital Safety & Privacy for Tactical Tech (also known as the Tactical Technology Collective). Mitchell worked leading security of Digital Safety & Privacy, at Tactical Tech (also known as the Tactical Technology Collective). In his work there Mitchell leads security training efforts, curricula, and organizational security for the organization in their mission to raise awareness about privacy, provide tools for digital security, and mobilize people to turn information into action.

Mitchell sits on the Network Investment Council of Reset Tech, and the board of Action Squared Inc. and the advisory board of the Open Technology Fund.

He was a tech advisor to the Human Rights Foundation and the Internet Freedom Festival. Mitchell was former on the advisory board to many organizations including: the Digital Security Exchange, Citizen Clinic at Berkeley University Center for Long Term Cybersecurity, The 4th Amendment Center at the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, and TurnOut.

In 2021, Mitchell graced the cover of Newsweek magazine when they named him one of Americas Greatest Disruptors, the Electronic Frontier Foundation named Mitchell a John Perry Barlow/Pioneer Award awardee for his groundbreaking anti-surveillance and privacy work protecting the Black Community. In 2020, Mitchell was selected as a WIRED 25, a list of "scientists, technologists, artists, and chefs who are standing between us and species collapse." In 2017 He was selected as a Vice Motherboard Human of The Year for his work protecting marginalized groups. He was a 2016 Mozilla Foundation / Ford Foundation Open Web Fellow, embedded at Color of Change a racial justice / social justice organization. Mitchell was also an Internet Freedom Festival 2016 Fellow, a New America 2016 CyberSecurity Initiative Fellow, an Institute For The Future “Future For Good” Fellow.

In the past he worked as a data journalist at The New York Times and a developer at CNN, Time Inc, NewsOne/InteractiveOne/TVOne/RadioOne, AOL/Huffington Post, & Essence Magazine.

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