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Internet Freedom and Access: Measuring perceptions of internet freedom and access in Pakistan and its impact on privacy and security

Principle Investigator and Contact Person:
Prof. Dr. Yasemin Acar, Paderborn University, Department of Computer Science

Student Researchers:
Zubair Zia Dar, Muhammad Asif, Daniyal Nawaz

Project Description:

Examining the relationship between internet freedom, censorship, and its effects on security and privacy in Pakistan is the aim of this survey. We hope to learn more about the difficulties people encounter and the methods they use to safeguard their online security and privacy by gathering information on their attitudes, behaviors, and experiences with regard to online censorship. This study will advance knowledge of the intricate interactions between these variables in the context of Pakistan and could offer suggestions for resolving associated issues and enhancing the region's users' online experiences.


Atleast 18 years old, must be from Pakistan.


We have created the questionair for our survey paticipants using LIMESurvey. We will perform Quantitative and Qualitative analysis to generate further insights. For analysis, we will use MAXQDA and QCAMap Softwares.

Risks & Benefits:

Participants might feel uneasy discussing experiences related to online censorship and privacy concerns. Although the survey strives to maintain anonymity, there is a minimal risk of unintentional data exposure.

The results intend to increase the understanding of how internet freedom, censorship, and privacy intersect in Pakistan. This knowledge will inform policies, empower advocacy efforts, and guide the development of tools that enhance online experiences.


It will take around 30 minutes to complete the survey. Participation in the survey is voluntary and you are free to leave the survey at any time.

There is no monetary compensation for participation in this study.


To ensure data confidentiality we won't collect personally identifiable information or sensitive data from research participants. Access to data will only be for our group members. We will sotre the data on Lime survey and we will store it for 1 year.

Subjects’ Rights:

Your participation is voluntary.

You may terminate your participation at any time by leaving the study environment or notifying the investigator. Partial results may be stored de-identified. You may withdraw your consent to the use of your personal data at any time by emailing Zubair Zia Dar (, Muhammad Asif (masif@mail.uni-, Daniyal Nawaz ( Or send an email to Please note that while we will delete all personal data at your request, once we have de-identified the data and can no longer associate it with your request, it may still be used for our research.

Future use of research data:
To maximize the benefits of your participation in this project, by further contributing to science and our community, your de-identified information may be stored for future research. Research data at Paderborn University are typically stored for 10 years in order to be available for questions and concerns with the research.

For additional questions about this research, you may contact

Zubair Zia Dar (

Muhammad Asif (

Daniyal Nawaz (

By clicking NEXT on this consent form, I am affirming that;

I am age 18 or older.

I am comfortable using the English language to participate in this study.

I meet the requirements to participate in this study.

I have read and understood the above information. All of the questions that I had about this research have been answered.

I have chosen to participate in and continue this study with the understanding that I may stop participating at any time without penalty or loss of benefits to which I am otherwise entitled.

I am aware that I may revoke my consent at any time.

I hereby consent (Art. 6 para. 1 lit. a GDPR) that my submitted personal data may be stored and processed. I have read the privacy policy for the form. I am aware of the right of withdrawal.


Thank you for taking the time to be a part of this important research. By sharing your insights, you contribute to advancing knowledge about internet freedom, censorship, and the measures people take to protect their security and privacy. Your responses are confidential, and we appreciate your time and thoughtful input. 

Let's work together to enhance internet freedom and security for everyone!

There are 30 questions in this survey.