In order to address the growing threat of cybercrime, as well as the technological means available to combat it and improve network security, top financial sector experts gathered to discuss the issue. This meeting was the first of a series of round table meetings organized by Columbus Business Solutions for members of the manufacturing industry, and it served as the kickoff event for the entire series. An interactive live hack demonstration conducted by Martin Voelk of Cyber 51, who demonstrated the nature of network vulnerabilities in the banking sector in addition to panel presentations by renowned industry experts, was also held as part of the event. The employment of cutting-edge technical solutions in the financial sector was the subject of discussion during this session.

Financial fraud, according to the police, has reportedly totaled more than $2 billion in Jamaica over the last four years, with cybercrime believed to be a significant factor, according to the police. A total of more than 1,000 websites, including those operated by the government, were compromised during 2011 and 2012, according to official government statistics. The Cyber Crime Unit of the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions reported last month that there had been an incredible 88 cases of third-party fraud, as well as debit and credit card fraud, since the beginning of the calendar year, which is even more concerning.

The Bank of Jamaica’s Deputy Governor, Livingston Morrison, spoke to an assembly of bankers and other industry experts in which he emphasized the essential role that technology plays in network security. The author asserts that, among other things, “financial institutions [must] make considerable investments in technology in order to operate inside the domestic financial system and to maintain a competitive financial posture in the marketplace.” As the author explains, “the facilitation of proper technology assists the regulatory process in a variety of ways, including data integrity preservation, an early warning system with triggers and notifications, and business intelligence with predictive analytics, to name a few examples.”

To be protected from cyberattacks, businesses in the Caribbean should be aware of their susceptibility, according to Gilbert Perez, Territory Manager for Fortinet, an internationally recognized provider of network security solutions. Due to the fact that they are located in the Caribbean, many small businesses and organizations in the region may believe that security is not a problem that they need to be concerned about. According to him, as more organizations around the world begin to improve their network security, making it more difficult for hackers to gain access to their network assets, hackers are looking for an alternative, more vulnerable locations to conduct their operations, some of which are in the Caribbean.

A new deal between Fortinet and Columbus Business Solutions will see the companies collaborate to offer organizations cost-effective cloud-based network security solutions. “Columbus is a managed security service provider, and in partnership with Columbus, we can deliver solutions that can be delivered as a service through the cloud, protecting customers from the higher costs associated with the investment to deploy the hardware and systems to deliver the network security,” said Perez. “Columbus is a managed security service provider, and in partnership with Columbus, we can deliver solutions that can be delivered as a service through the cloud,” said Perez. Because Columbus is a managed security service provider, “we can develop solutions that can be delivered as a service through the cloud in cooperation with Columbus,” added Perez. Columbus, as a managed security service provider, can offer solutions that are supplied as a service over the internet, such as cloud computing. “By working together with Columbus, we can develop solutions that can be given as a service via the cloud,” Perez continued.

According to John Clear, Vice President for Columbus Business Solutions, which is operated by Columbus Communications Jamaica Limited, “This Round Table is the first in a series of Round Tables that will facilitate dynamic discussion in specific sectors, with the goal of advancing business efficiency and profitability goals.”

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It is said by the White House that “cyber security is a very modern topic that requires continuous investment and attention.” Furthermore, he indicated that “discussions on cloud infrastructure, business continuity, and other cloud services will continue in the foreseeable future.”

Ingrid Riley, a social media expert who was in attendance at the round table, showed her appreciation for the group’s efforts by saying, “It was a pleasure to be there.” Today, we talked about both the commercial and technical sides of cyber security. This, according to the study, served to raise awareness of both the prospects for doing business in the digital era and the criticality of being proactive in terms of defending our networks.

Round table discussions were held in which attendees included representatives from the private and academic sectors, as well as representatives from government, who all shared their perspectives on how to best apply technology and the regulatory framework required to address the growing problem of Internet-related crime, which is on the rise. Dr. Thomas Thompson, Senior Director for Fiscal Services, Claudette Crooks-Collie, President, MoneyMasters Jamaica, and Sheldon Powe, Chief Information Officer for Jamaica Money Market Brokers, Columbus Business, were among those who spoke at the event.

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