Mia Alsharif created “Tech4evil” as a way to connect tech enthusiasts with digital rights groups, to learn about and advocate for a humane digital world. Along with the podcast, which focuses on “saving the good in tech” is the “Ethical Technologist Society”.
“Our community, the Ethical Technologists Society, is all about tech ethics. We deliver this learning through the podcast, the member-based society as well as in-person events and workshops,” Mia says.
“As netizens and technologists, we aspire to learn how to be ethical technologists, promote ethical tech principles at work, and help build ethical-by-design frameworks.”
“We launched Tech for Evil project (opposite to Tech for Good) dedicated to educating people on privacy and digital rights and educating technologists on tech ethics. We also help create a ‘Global Ethical Tech Index’ and campaign to pass digital rights regulations and the universal declaration of digital rights.”
So, how did it all begin? Mia explains: “At Covid time, I was caught on back-to-back Zoom calls from 8:30 am until late in the evening, five days a week. I knew I could invest all this energy and my experience in cybersecurity and campaigning for creating a real difference in the tech world.”
Mia, who has previously worked as the Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) at the University of New South Wales, was new to Australia when she started the Tech4evil podcast.
“It’s a fun and engaging podcast, with factual blog posts, short articles, and talks. Än early challenge was having no network or knowledge of the local regulations to start a business. I am still learning. And the biggest success has been creating an international network of tech-enthusiasts, human rights lawyers, digital and privacy rights experts, and even journalists,” Mia says.
“We all have one common goal; a humane digital world for everyone.”
Upcoming plans for Tech4evil include a book about dark technology.
“I’m writing the book on Dark Technology and our group of ethical techies is working on drafting the universal declaration of digital rights. We also publish a new podcast episode every two weeks to educate netizens on digital rights and privacy.”
Mia says being part of the Fishburners community has been a wonderful experience.
“Fishburners is the best thing that has happened to me since I have moved to Australia in 2017. The power of belonging and the power of the community all felt and appreciated in this amazing community. It’s my family in Australia. I have access to invaluable knowledge and experience that is just a coffee break away.”
Tech4evil has featured twice on ABC Radio National as well as Electronic Frontiers of Australia and will soon be speaking to Humane Technology Australia, the UTS class of investigative journalism, and more.
“Please give our podcast a try. We want to hear your thoughts as the largest tech entrepreneurs in Australia because you are the ones shaping our digital future.”
Mia’s advice for other startups?
“Have a tribe of mentors, it will save you so much time and effort. Also, always give back to your community, even if you can do the (five-minute) favour.”