Roundup: for the week ending 24 May 2015

A roundup of the latest ICT/technology news from across the Caribbean region for the period Monday 18 May to Sunday 24 May 2015.

Monday, 18 May 2015

Courts To Have Role In Freedom Of Information

Bahamas – THE revised Freedom of Information bill will allow for the courts to ultimately determine matters of public interest, State Minister in the Ministry of Legal Affairs Damien Gomez confirmed yesterday… more

US Steps In To Assist After Hackers Attack Tourism Website

Bahamas – THE United States government has stepped in to assist Bahamian officials after two government websites were hacked by an Islamist activist group last week… more

Local internet exchange launches

Barbados – THE BARBADOS INTERNET Exchange – BARIX – was launched today, with major internet service providers signing a memorandum of understanding… more

Grenada launches business grants for innovators and entrepreneurs

Grenada – Innovators and entrepreneurs in Grenada will soon benefit from a suite of new grant funding opportunities… more

GT&T congratulates APNU+AFC; pledges support to efforts to move Guyana forward

Guyana – The Guyana Telephone & Telegraph Company (GT&T) on Monday offered its congratulations to A Partnership for National Unity and Alliance For Change  (APNU+AFC) for its victory in last week’s national election… more

Broadcasting Commission Has Right To Demand Cable Channel Removal – Dunn

Jamaica – Chairman of the Broadcasting Commission of Jamaica (BCJ), Professor Hopeton Dunn, has moved to clear the air on suggestions that he overstepped his authority last month when he issued a directive to cable operators to cease transmission of 19 channels… more

Telecoms Overreach Contradicts Vision 2030

Jamaica – THE EDITOR, Sir: Jamaica’s Vision 2030 document, which is supposedly the driver behind all government policy, seeks to position Jamaica as the place to live, work and do business by 2030… more

Unlock It! – Government Reviewing Mobile Phone Network Policy

Jamaica – Phillip Paulwell, the man who championed the liberalisation of the telecommunication sector in Jamaica, wants to see the sector go a step further in promoting competition and consumer choice by no longer locking mobile phones to a single network… more

Double win for Digicel Group at Global Telecoms Business Innovation Awards 2015

Regional – Digicel Group took home two awards at the annual Global Telecoms Business Innovation Awards 2015 held at the Sheraton Park Hotel, Piccadilly, London… more

HBO Go now available in the Caribbean

Regional – Continuing with the expansion to new users and new countries, HBO Latin America has announced that subscribers in the Caribbean can now access the online premium entertainment platform HBO GO for the first time… more

Tuesday, 19 May 2015

BTC chief says downsizing staff is ‘just business’

Bahamas – The Bahamas Telecommunications Company’s (BTC) decision to downsize its staff is a matter of “simple economics” as the company prepares for competition in the cellular services market, according to BTC CEO Leon Williams… more

Bishop Urges Government To Take Hacking Incident Seriously

Bahamas – BISHOP Simeon Hall yesterday urged the government to “exercise the highest seriousness” in its response to the recent hacking of two government websites… more

Telecoms deal

Barbados – COLUMBUS COMMUNICATIONS, Digicel and Cable & Wireless, which trades as LIME, have signed on to a landmark project which will bring benefits, including lower telecommunications costs… more

Telecommunications Minister Reports On Council Of Ministers Meeting

Dominica – The Honorable Minister for Information Technology, Science and Telecommunication, Kelvar Darroux is reporting that the 31st Council of Ministers of Telecoms Meeting which he attended in St. Lucia was productive… more

Dominican Republic tweaks its website

Dominican Republic – The Dominican Republic Ministry of Tourism (MITUR) announced updates to its current website,, at this year’s Dominican Annual Tourism Exchange (DATE) conference in Punta Cana… more willing to work with new Govt

Guyana – The Guyana Telephone and Telegraph Company (GT&T) yesterday signaled its intentions to work with the David Granger government, offering its congratulations to A Partnership for National Unity and Alliance For Change (APNU+AFC) for its victory… more

Government Endorsing Cable Theft?

Jamaica – THE EDITOR, Sir: I write following two articles published in your newspaper, ‘Cable clash! Illegal access to US networks puts OPM and Broadcasting Commission on collision course’ (Sunday Gleaner, May 17, 2015) and ‘Broadcasting Commission has right to demand cable channel removal – Dunn’ (Gleaner, May 18, 2015)… more

NIA’s Department of Information Technology Continues to Ensure Safety and Security of Website and Overall Network

Saint Kitts and Nevis – The Nevis Island Administration [NIA] is doing all it can to ensure the safety and security of its websites and computer networks… more

Govt holds hand on Cyber Crime Bill

Trinidad and Tobago – Amendments can be made to exclude specific groups of people, media practitioners included, from the prosecution under the Cyber Crime Bill… more

Govt/media to meet on Cyber Bill

Trinidad and Tobago – A FOUR-PERSON Cabinet team will meet media groups at 10 am tomorrow to discuss the controversial Cyber Crime Bill 2015 which critics say could hurt media freedom, revealed Housing Minister, Dr Roodal Moonilal… more

Wednesday, 20 May 2015

Cable Bahamas and Cash ‘N Go team up to provide more payment locations for customers

Bahamas – n a move to meet customer requests for additional pay centres, Cable Bahamas has partnered with Cash ‘N Go to offer alternative sites for subscribers to make bill payments… more

Cable Getting The Jump?

Bahamas – EDITOR, The Tribune. URCA and Cable Bahamas are going at each other in the media on CBL’s tower construction exercise, but does anyone else care?  … more

Draft freedom of information bill released in The Bahamas

Bahamas – The Bahamas government released a draft Freedom of Information Bill on Monday that seeks to reinforce “governmental accountability, transparency and public participation in national decision-making”… more

URCA tight-lipped on ‘stalled’ mobile process

Bahamas – Officials from the Utilities Regulatory and Competition Authority (URCA) have remained tight-lipped about reports of the suspension and indefinite postponement of the spectrum auction…. more

Big profits for C&W in Barbados

Barbados – CABLE & WIRELESS has seen a resurgence of its performance in Barbados, earning $112 million in pre-tax profits up to the end of March… more

Local email addresses to move to new provider

Cayman Islands – LIME customers using the local e-mail address will be going through a transition this summer as the local telecomm and internet provider moves its webmail service from Google’s Gmail to Zimbra… more

Curaçao Prepares For Cyber Attacks

Curaçao – Citing renewed evidence that cyber terrorists and hackers are now heavily targeting the Caribbean region, a three-man team of Ethical Hackers and Cyber Security trainers are expected to fly into the Dutch Antilles next month to hold a two day training workshop in Curaçao, Aruba, and Bonaire to better prepare those countries to deal with the threat… more

Telecoms, AML bills high on agenda of 11th Parliament – Harmon

Guyana – The liberalisation of the telecommunications sector is set to become a reality with the new administration… more

Sliding dollar pushing up cable rates, says Flow

Jamaica – THE island’s major cable provider, Flow, has blamed the increase in rates for its packages on the sliding Jamaican dollar, and says the recent jump is based purely on a business decision, which had nothing to do with the pending blackout of 19 cable channels… more

Cable & Wireless CWC logoCable & Wireless Communications Plc Results For The Year Ended 31 March 2015

Regional – Strong performance and improving platform for growth… more

CWC reports best revenue growth in five years

Regional – Cable & Wireless Communications (CWC) has reported a 4% year-on-year increase in group revenue to USD1.8 billion in its financial year ending 31 March 2015, saying that such growth reflected its strategic progress… more

Cable & Wireless Operating Profit Up, Hopes For Columbus Broadband Boost

Regional – Cable & Wireless Communications PLC reported higher operating profits and revenue for its last financial year, as it saw growth across its mobile, business and video businesses and continue to strip out costs, but said it has much more to do if it is going to realise the full potential of the business… more

Curacao, Aruba And Bonaire To Get Hands On Introduction To Microsoft’s Windows 10

Regional – Curaçao, Aruba and Bonaire are to benefit from a training demonstration and boot camp introduction to Microsoft’s incoming Windows 10 operating system… more

Cybercrime Bill a threat to press freedom

Trinidad and Tobago – The International Press Institute (IPI) has urged the Trinidad and Tobago Government to take into account concerns by media stakeholders over the Cybercrime Bill… more

Emailgate closed

Trinidad and Tobago – The Integrity Commission has decided to close the emailgate affair, leading Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar to claim a major victory for her office… more

Thursday, 21 May 2015

Bahamas Reviews Internet Security after Hackers Hit Government Sites

Bahamas – The Bahamas government says it is reviewing its entire Internet infrastructure after an Islamist group allegedly hacked several of its official websites… more

CWC: BTC ‘Lags’ Region Despite $75m Investment

Bahamas – The Bahamas Telecommunications Company’s (BTC) controlling owner yesterday conceded that its network quality “lags” much of the Caribbean and wider world, despite increasing its capital investment by 47 per cent last year… more

200 jobs may be on the way

Barbados – BARBADOS IS in the running for 200 new jobs and millions of dollars in additional investment as Cable & Wireless (C&W) returns its call centre from El Salvador to the Caribbean… more

Barbados first to go with FLOW

Barbados – Barbados is set to become the first country to experience Cable and Wireless Communications’ (CWC) transition to FLOW… more

Curaçao flagCuraçao Identified As Hackers Satellite Grid During Investigation Of 2012 Cyber Attack On Grenada And Several Other OECS Countries

Curaçao – In 2012, the Caribbean island state of Grenada and most of the other OECS countries suffered a massive attack that actually shut down a larger part of the OECS financial system… more

GT&T’s CEO resigns

Guyana – Chief Executive Officer of telecommunications giant, the Guyana Telephone and Telegraph Company (GT&T), Radha Krishna Sharma has resigned… more

Cable & Wireless Communications Selects Coriant for Optical Backbone Projects in Jamaica and Barbados

Regional – Coriant, a global supplier of SDN-enabled end-to-end transport networking solutions, today announced that it has been selected by Cable & Wireless Communications (CWC), a full-service quad play telecoms provider operating in 42 countries throughout the Caribbean and Latin America, to enhance the flexibility, reliability, and scalability of its high-capacity fiber optic backbone networks in Barbados and Jamaica… more

Belize does it again!

Regional – Belize cops first place in CANTO’s 9th Regional WTISD – Video Competition for the second consecutive year… more

CWC To Return LIME Call Centre Operations To The Caribbean

Regional – Pressured by mounting complaints of a language barrier, Cable and Wireless Communications Plc will return its call centre operations to the Caribbean, with plans for a 200-seat contact centre that will replace the service now provided from Spanish-speaking El Salvador… more

Digicel Business wins Avaya’s Best Project of the Year Award

Regional – Digicel, the region’s leading Business Solutions provider, recently won the highly coveted, Avaya Caribbean-wide Project of the Year award thanks to its ICT and Unified Communication platform deployed at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital (QEH) in Barbados… more

Fitch Affirms Digicel’s Ratings at ‘B’; Outlook Stable

Regional – Fitch Ratings has affirmed the ratings of Digicel Group Limited (DGL) and its subsidiaries Digicel Limited (DL) and Digicel International Finance Limited (DIFL), collectively referred to as ‘Digicel’ as follows… more

ICANN chief to step down next March

Regional – The head of the non-profit group that oversees all Internet addresses will step down in March 2016… more

Cable and Wireless loses $$ from TSTT

Trinidad and Tobago – Cable & Wireless Communications’ revenue from its 49 per cent stake in telecoms provider Telecommunications Services of Trinidad and Tobago (TSTT) was down one per cent during CWC’s financial year, the company said as it announced results for year ended March 31, 2015 in London Wednesday… more

Name emailgate source

Trinidad and Tobago – Former Attorney General Anand Ramlogan yesterday called on Opposition Leader Dr Keith Rowley to let the nation know the source the “bogus emails” Rowley read in Parliament on May 20, 2013 which implicated himself, and others, of acts of criminal misconduct… more

Friday, 22 May 2015

Digicel Denies Blocking What’s App Calls

Antigua and Barbuda – Digicel is pointing the finger at WhatsApp in response to reports that it is blocking calls on the messenger app over its network… more

Bahamas flag (Wikipedia)Digicel Leaves: We Lose

Bahamas – Digicel leaves : we lose! What kind of statement is this you ask ? What does Digi leaving have to do with “we” the local consumers losing? … more

The generation that took “Silence is golden” too far…

Bahamas – Generation Y, known for their unfair and almost criminal access to the most information readily available than any previous generation in human history, has perhaps taken the golden rule of silence too far… more

URCA Holds Town Meeting on ICT Innovation & Connectivity

Bahamas – Through regulating the electronic communication and telecommunication sector in The Bahamas, the Utilities Regulation and Competition Authority (URCA) plans to improve consumer protection regulations by allowing the public more access to their services… more

Why We Cannot Afford More Delays

Bahamas – It is safe to say that all well-thinking people would agree that approving a second telecommunications company for The Bahamas, thus bringing competition and better service and lower prices, is good for all… more

Telecoms Minister Affirms Faith In NTRC

Dominica – Telecommunications Minister, the Hon. Kelvar Darroux believes that the National Telecommunications Regulatory Commission (NTRC) is more than proficient in its ability to regulate telecommunication companies in Dominica… more

Upgrade To Broadband Service On The Cards

Dominica – The Hon. Minister Kelvar Darroux is disclosing that telephone service all over Dominica will soon be addressed… more

Digicel officially launches its Top Up App

Haiti – Digicel announced the official launch of its convenient Top Up App which delivers a fast, reliable way for customers from abroad to send minutes to their family and friends living in the Caribbean anytime… more

Jamaicans accept FLOW price increases — CWC executive

Jamaica – JAMAICANS are accepting the price increases at large cable provider FLOW, according to John Reid, an executive at the provider’s new parent company Cable & Wireless Communications (CWC)… more

LIME gets $464-m contract to upgrade JCF phone system

Jamaica – LIME Jamaica Limited has been awarded a contract for US$4 million, or just over $464 million, for the upgrading of the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) telecommunications system… more

Moving to ‘Muigle’

Jamaica – The word Google has become a generic term for on-line searches engines, and if Jamaican software developer Lloyd Laing has his way, his on-line tool Muigle, could become “music’s most powerful search engine”… more

Supreme Court Turns Down Flow’s Application Seeking To Bar Digicel From Hiring Sean Latty

Jamaica – The Supreme Court has turned down an application by Columbus Communications Jamaica Limited, trading as Flow, which was seeking an injunction to bar its rival, Digicel Jamaica Limited, from employing its former managing director, Sean Latty… more

Caribbean among slowest in the world to adopt new Internet standard

Regional – With its high penetration, heavy consumption and hefty fees, the Caribbean provides Internet service providers (ISPs) with some of their best-paying customers… more

Caribbean “Significant” To Global Internet Governance, ICANN Says

Regional – A top executive of the non-profit that oversees all the Internet addresses has described the Caribbean as “significant” to the governance of the global Internet… more

Cuba flag (Wikipedia)Havana to host LACNIC 25

Regional – Cuba will host a significant gathering of the regional Internet community next year… more

New CWC call centre for Jamaica or Barbados — Bentley

Regional – WITH the introduction of a new customer service call centre in either Barbados or Jamaica, the takeover of Columbus Communications by Cable and Wireless should result in a net gain in employment rather than a net loss, according to Phil Bentley, CEO of the newly-merged company… more

Emailgate Not Closed

Trinidad and Tobago – INTEGRITY Commission Deputy Chairman, retired Justice Sebastian Ventour, yesterday accused the body which he sat on until yesterday of misleading the public on the emailgate affair… more

Saturday, 23 May 2015

Wheatley calls for Joint Select Committee of Parliament on ICT

Jamaica – OPPOSITION Spokesman on Science, ICT & Digital Society Development Dr Andrew Wheatley has asked the on the Government to immediately convene a Joint Select Committee of Parliament to consider ICT matters… more

Cable & Wireless boss focused on Central American and Caribbean expansion

Regional – Telecoms analysts questioned Bentley’s appointment 18 months ago, noting his lack of sector experience… more

C&W to use drone technology to identify problems after a storm

Regional – Cable & Wireless Communications has announced that it has begun to test drone technology to help to speed up network and connectivity restoration in the aftermath of natural disaster, such as a hurricane or tropical storm… more

Special Branch report: DPP Office was monitored

Trinidad and Tobago – A Special Branch report has contradicted claims that the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) was not being monitored… more

                                                                                                       Sunday, 24 May 2015

More international investment for Jamaican tech start-ups

Jamaica – JAMAICAN tech entrepreneurs continue to get more support from international investors as Start-Up Jamaica rolls out a second set of participants for seed funding… more

Who’ll Win The Cable War? – Regulator Plays Down Rift With OPM Despite More Indications That Order To Stop Broadcasting 19 Channels Will Be Reversed

Jamaica – Executive director of the Broadcasting Commission of Jamaica (BCJ) Cordel Green is downplaying reports that the entity is on a collision course with the Office of the Prime Minister (OPM)… more


Image credits:  (Mick Baker)rooster (flickr);  The West Indian News;  Marketing Magazine;  Wikipedia;  Wikipedia;  Wikipedia