Acting Industry Minister, Senator Darcy Boyce. (FP)

Barbados is determined to win the fight against Cyber Crime!

And, acting Industry Minister, Senator Darcy Boyce has suggested that this country moves swiftly to ratify the Cyber Crime Convention, and once done, international cyber criminals would be given notice that this country has the necessary laws to ensure their prosecution.

He made this appeal as he addressed the Annual Conference for Regional Central Banks Information Systems Specialists under the theme: Opportunities, Risks and Threats of Information Security Technologies for Regional Central Banks, this morning at Hilton Barbados.

Mr. Boyce told his audience: "…As government departments and private sector businesses interact with many international businesses there needs to be that level of confidence that local partners are engaging in the best and safest information management practices to mitigate many of the risks present in the ICT landscape."

Stating that with the introduction of the Computer Misuse Act, the Electronic Regulations Act and the soon-to-be enacted Data Protection Act, Senator Boyce said Government had shown leadership in addressing security and privacy policy issues.

"…Government has provided an enabling framework that is capable of offering some measure of certainty to entities and individuals using e-commerce while at the same time having the capability of offering flexibility to accommodate new developments," he said, adding that "potential foreign investors in Barbados could be confident that Barbados had legislation aligned to that of other international jurisdictions," he said.

Against this backdrop, President of the Barbados Information Systems Security Association, Charles Walton, told attendees that criminals also saw opportunities for additional ways of gaining access to information resources at the personal, organisational and national level.

He said: "With the adoption of any technology comes the risk of exploitation or the vulnerabilities either in technology itself or the implementation…we have seen internationally, reports on the increasing number of incidences where access has been gained to financial institutions, businesses, government departments all resulting in disclosure of credit card information and money, Corporate secrets, national defense secrets with the most recently reported cases being the $45 Million ATM heist and the attempt on the US military."

Mr. Walton noted that while persons may be aware of information security incidences in the international arena, there were many unreported cases at the local level.?? He pointed out that due to individuals not reporting these crimes they were therefore unaware of the extent of the problem in Barbados, and what it might ultimately be costing this country.

"The challenge, therefore, is how to successfully adopt emerging technologies and manage the benefits while minimising the risks and also to understand the extent of the problem and the best solutions to effectively reduce the problem," he surmised.

Moreover, he stressed that to effectively achieve this there must be responsibility on all levels which must focus on awareness, education and training, response and legislation.


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