Avast has always protected people online with powerful and innovative technology, and giving back to the community has always been a core part of our culture. The company and its vision have evolved along with advances in digital technologies that have changed nearly every aspect of how we live. As we have grown in our ambition to protect people’s digital freedom, we have also seen the many ways in which digital rights and freedoms are in jeopardy around the world. There is a growing divide between the digitally free and the digitally oppressed, the spy and the surveilled, and accurate information and misinformation. The internet today is not moving in the right direction; it’s moving towards a more closed, less free, and more misinformed future.
It is the nature of the decentralized internet that no one can simply wave a magic wand to create a better digital world in which people are empowered, enabled, and informed, rather than disenfranchised and oppressed. And so, those with the power to influence the future of the internet must work together to truly promote digital freedom. We must fight for users to have the access and power to decide how and when their data can be shared. We must advocate for the free and open flow of information on the internet so ideas and free expression can be achieved without censors taking hold. And more than anything, we must work to ensure those around the globe who don’t have free and open access to the internet are afforded that right before it’s too late.
The Foundation works directly with communities, charities and both governmental and non-governmental organizations to empower digital citizens around the world and create a more inclusive, equitable digital future; one in which everyone can achieve their full potential and feel protected.
I am very proud of what the new Avast Foundation has achieved in its first year, and especially how it has purposefully brought in new voices and perspectives to inform its philanthropic vision. I had the opportunity to meet the members of the Foundation’s Youth Leadership Board in March of this year. Even in that brief meeting, it was clear to me that these young people have an enthusiasm for technology matched by their passion for creating a better world. I was struck by how much extraordinary potential lives in young people, and inspired by the work they are doing to achieve their visions of a brighter world.
I have been equally impressed by the Foundation’s responsiveness in the face of crisis and unthinkable events — a natural disaster in the Czech Republic in June 2021 and then the Russian invasion of Ukraine in February 2022 — and how nimbly it has been able to work with our employees to mobilize additional aid and volunteering efforts, as well as coordinate direct evacuations from Ukraine.
Avast works to provide consumers, families, and small businesses with technological solutions and information that helps them control and improve their online experience, while using our corporate voice to advocate for a safer, private, and more free digital world.
The new Avast Foundation was established to bring Avast’s philanthropic activities closer to the purpose of the wider Avast organization and complement it with deeper reach at the societal level with the goal of meaningful community engagement. Avast works to provide consumers, families, and small businesses with technological solutions and information that helps them control and improve their online experience, while using our corporate voice to advocate for a safer, private, and more free digital world. The Foundation, as an independent philanthropic organization, is able to work more broadly with communities to tackle the systemic social issues related to digital freedom and citizenship. We believe strongly in the power of business to do good by doing well, and the Foundation motivates Avast employees by animating our wider purpose. The establishment of the Avast Foundation and our continued partnership to reach its goals manifests our commitment to digital freedom.
I would like to express my gratitude to the entire Avast Foundation team for a very successful first year, and wish them all the best in their meaningful and impactful work. Thank you, and congratulations!