About Us

Our Mission

Access defends and extends the digital rights of users at risk around the world. By combining innovative policy, user engagement, and direct technical support, we fight for open and secure communications for all.

Our Story

Access is an international human rights organization premised on the belief that political participation and the realization of human rights in the 21st century is increasingly dependent on access to the internet and other forms of technology. Founded in the wake of the 2009 Iranian post-election crackdown, Access teams with digital activists and civil society groups internationally to build their technical capacity and to help them advocate globally for their digital rights. Access provides thought leadership and practical policy recommendations in the broader field of internet freedom, and based on that expertise mobilizes its global movement of citizens to campaign for an open internet accessible to all.

Access' Global Movement for Digital Freedom is made up of ordinary people from all over the world. Many of us are normal internet users without much experience in either human rights or technology, but we understand that technology can be a powerful platform which gives us all additional strength to achieve greater participation, accountability and transparency. Together we can work to help each other and maintain the internet as open space for all. Join us and you'll receive action updates with easy ways to effect real change or take action with our campaigns.

To make sure change happens on an institutional level, we connect digital activists with those in the technology industry, academia, and government, so that together we can influence decision makers on key internet governance issues. We aim to keep the concerns of human rights defenders working in cyberspace at the forefront of both policy and practice, by providing thought leadership and innovative ideas at the national, regional and international levels.

We have entered a moment in time where we have a global public commons of information through which citizens around the world can communicate, but the free exchange of information is under siege. Without a global movement to protect the internet, the rights that we have fought so hard for offline, will be lost in our online future. 


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Why we need Access

Name “Access helps me to keep my identity and be part of a global community.”
Joseph Elias, Lebanon

Name “We need access to know, to learn, to tell, to share, to express, to expand, to explore ... to live a dignified life as a human being.”
Santosh Sigdel, Nepal

Name “Freedom of speech online is the key to having our voices heard. Without it we are silenced.”
Natalie Vilarroel, Argentina

Name “The free exchange of ideas and information is why the internet was created. ”
Joe, United States

Name “Regimes are hijacking people's ability to express themselves. Access is giving it back to them.”
Nick Perrett, USA