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Mar 2, 2017

Belize to Introduce Response Teams for Cyber-Emergencies

Bevil Wooding

Wooding was speaking to News Five at the official launch of the Forum this afternoon.  It is expected to attract high-profile officials and experts, including heads of local, regional and international organizations, government Ministers, federal officers and chief executives. The  expected  outcome  of  the  Symposium  will  be  the  development  of  a  National Cyber-Security Framework and Action Plan for addressing cyber-security issues. Wooding noted the importance of using existing laws until better ones are in place. Meanwhile, P.U.C. chair John Avery addressed plans to create teams of internet experts to address specific and general threats to cyber-security.


Bevil Wooding, Internet Strategist, Packet Clearing House

“It’s not entirely truthful or entirely accurate to say that we don’t have legislation in place; a number of the incidents online can be treated with by existing law. For example, I denigrate you, or I impute that you have done something that you haven’t done, there are libel laws; there are defamation of character laws on the statutes that can be applied – and so it really is an issue of taking a case by case approach to what some of these abuse scenarios are, and examining to see to what extent existing legislation can treat with them; and that’s why it’s important for the lawyers as well as the judges in the system to be aware of these issues.”


John Avery

John Avery, Chairman, Public Utilities Commission

“There is no fix-all; there is nothing that you can do that will resolve every issue forever. And so one of the things we want to do is to establish what we call these Computer Systems Emergency Response Teams (CSERT); we want to establish a national CSERT with participation from different sectors; but then we also want to establish sectorial CSERT’s – a good example is for example, financial institutions. Financial institutions are always a preferred target for obvious reasons, and the more we take business transactions, banking transactions online, the more opportunity exists for criminals to then disrupt the services and the operations for these institutions. So we would like to establish for example, a CSERT of IT professionals and others who will collaborate with each other; whenever you have an attack on one of the banks, they can share information, share solutions, inform each other. We expect that the CSERT’s would not only network locally, but with regional partners; the Caribbean on a whole is a major target for cyber-security threats.”


Wooding additionally cited a regional case where a judge unsuccessfully attempted to place a gag order on posting on Facebook, which is subject to U.S. law. The Forum’s organizers will appear on Open Your Eyes on Friday morning and will be keeping in touch in the run-up to the Forum in April.

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Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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