Howard Swains

Freelance journalist

United Kingdom

Reporter, feature writer and sub-editor in news, sport, arts and travel, with experience across print and digital titles, including The Times, Guardian, Independent, Newsweek, Sunday Times Magazine and CNN. MS Journalism (Columbia University); MA English (St Andrews).

The Independent
Khat fight: Harmless recreational drug or a recruitment tool for

It is a rainy Sunday afternoon in Peckham, south-east London, and if recent sensational reports are to be believed, I am shortly going to risk my life. Behind a blue door on an otherwise unremarkable residential street is a mafrish - the name given to the houses-cum-social clubs devoted to the chewing of khat.

John Peel and Nab Woodley

A strange, old and long personal history about a time when we used to get to hang around with rock stars

ST Magazine
From prodigy to poker king

At the age of eight, Jeff Sarwer was a chess champion. By his mid-teens he had vanished into the clutches of his abusive, Svengali-like father. Where did he go?

ST Magazine
How Warhol's world became a soup opera

Andy Warhol said he came from nowhere, but his family's roots lie in a small town in Slovakia. More than 20 years after his death, relatives and neighbours are locked in a battle over his artistic legacy and how to commemorate his life

White pygmy: 30 years in the rainforest

Louis Sarno left New Jersey to record the music of the pygmies in the Central African Republic. Thirty years later, he is still there - and has produced one of the world's most significant music collections

Are you in danger of 'drive-by' hacking?

All the talk of phone-hacking this summer has brought the thorny issue of mobile device security to the forefront of the news agenda. But even the most scurrilous hack of Fleet Street would be amazed at the talents of the some of the dedicated hackers of cyberspace, who are now targeting mobile devices with great audacity.

Ethical hackers battle to prevent 'information security apocalypse'

Barely a day passes without news of another major computer security breach. Last week a hacking network named "Hollywood Leaks" began their attack on the personal data of celebrities, officially adding the glitterati to a roll of shame that already includes targets as diffuse as Sony, the Church of Scientology and PayPal.

Reports of my death

A very early look at internet fakers--Munchausen by internet, catfishers and the like