Flash Drives for Freedom


Believe it or not, USBs are a significant form of sharing information in North Korea. Many citizens have devices with USB ports. So for many years, North Korean defectors have organized efforts to smuggle outside info into North Korea on USB drives to counter Kim Jong-un’s constant propaganda. But these groups were buying USB drives at cost with limited resources. Flash Drives For Freedom is a campaign that travels the world inspiring people to donate their own USB drives. As a collaboration between the Human Rights Foundation, Forum 280, and USB Memory Direct, Flash Drives for Freedom is significantly increasing the capacities of these North Korean defector groups.

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Mail in your USB drives or donate cash to purchase drives. Every dollar donated in cash is equivalent to one drive.

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The USB drives are erased, logos are removed, and are filled with content proven to inspire North Koreans to disbelieve Kim Jong-Un's propaganda and take a stand. Content includes e-books, films, and an offline Korean Wikipedia.

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The drives are smuggled into the country using many different methods. A healthy black market distributes the drives throughout North Korea. The majority of North Koreans have access to devices that can read USB drives.

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If you would like a tax receipt for your donation of flash drives, please include your contact information (including email) as well as a description and estimated value of the donated goods.

Our North Korean defector partners determine what goes on the drives. Content ranges from South Korean soap operas and Hollywood films, to Korean-language versions of Wikipedia and interviews with North Korean defectors.

These drives will carry content that is new and different from everything most North Koreans know. This authoritarian regime is most threatened by external information getting into the hands of its citizens.

The North Korean government strictly prohibits access to foreign information and media, and individuals found in possession of this material do face severe punishment. However, access to foreign information in North Korea has grown significantly in the last 20 years, and it is a valued and coveted commodity. In addition, HRF believes that access to information is a fundamental right, not a privilege. 

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When you donate cash, 100% of the funds go toward buying USB drives in bulk. Our current rate is $0.85 per drive.

Organize a drive collection, get your company to donate in bulk, and many other ways to get involved.

Proceeds from purchasing Flash Drives For Freedom products go directly to getting USB drives into North Korea.

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It’s literally a key that will unlock a new world for North Koreans.
— Wired
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North Korea is a country where dictators are worshiped like gods, where the postal system reads and censors all mail, and where citizens cannot access the internet. But there’s more to North Korea than oppressive government surveillance and critically malnourished citizens. There’s a lot of sensationalism surrounding the Hermit Kingdom. Can you separate the fact from the fiction? 

Your passion and community organizing skills can help raise awareness, resulting in the donation of flash drives on your campus, in your local community, or within your digital network. These drives will carry content that is new and different from everything most North Koreans know. This authoritarian regime is most threatened by external information getting into the hands of its citizens.

HRF supports technologies and initiatives that disrupt the North Korean regime.

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