The author of one of Mexico's best-known websites documenting the country's drug violence has revealed her identity as a woman in her mid-20s.
Using the pseudonym of "Lucy," the author of Blog del Narco, a site which has graphically reported drug-releated deaths since March 2010, told UK newspaper The Guardian and US newspaper Texas Observer that she lived her life in fear but was utterly dedicated to her work.
She has never given a major interview before, and her identity remains unknown. "Who am I? I'm in my mid-20s, I live in northern Mexico, I'm a journalist. I'm a woman, I'm single, I have no children. And I love Mexico," she told the newspapers.
Lucy, whose site attracts 3 million readers a month, said she and her colleagues changed where they lived every month and hid their equipment, in an attempt to avoid being identified.
The author also said that three people killed in Tamaulipas in 2011, whose bodies were left with signs warning "This will happen to all the Internet snitches," had been contributing information to Blog del Narco.
InSight Crime Analysis
Social media has become an increasingly important source of information on Mexico's drug war, as traditional media have resorted to self-censorship to protect themselves. However, those reporting online also face very serious risks. The dangers faced by bloggers like Lucy is illustrated by the deaths in Tamaulipas, as well as recent threats against sites like Facebook page Valor por Tamulipas, which seems to have been taken down in recent days.
A report last year by US NGO Freedom House found many journalists using social media were not taking adequate privacy precautions online. Nearly 70 percent of the journalists surveyed had been threatened.