Caribbean Internet Governance Forum (CIGF) from August 21-23 2017 with local CIGF hub in Trinidad and Tobago

The 13th annual Caribbean Internet Governance Forum (CIGF) organized by the Caribbean Telecommunications Union (CTU) will be held from August 21 – 23 2017 at the Government’s Training Division, Betteto Frett Building, Wickham’s Cay 1 in Road Town, Tortola, British Virgin Islands.

You can read the overview and agenda of the 13th CIGF and register for the event online at

The times in the British Virgin Islands is the same in Trinidad and Tobago so no need to recalculate the times on the CIGF agenda.

While persons will be able to watch and participate online, the Internet Society Trinidad and Tobago Chapter (ISOC-TT) will be having a local hub on the same days at the University of the West Indies (UWI). See the ISOC-TT’s Facebook event page for details to register to attend.

CIGF Background

The Caribbean Internet Governance Forum (CIGF) is a regional, multi-stakeholder forum initiated by the CTU and the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Secretariat in 2005 to coordinate a regional approach to Internet Governance. The forum has since met annually and the primary products of its work have been the formulation of a Caribbean Internet Governance Policy Framework (currently at v2), the proliferation of Internet Exchange Points (IXPs) and capacity building in Internet Governance Principles across the Caribbean.

The 13th CIGF will assess the status and effectiveness of the new thrust, being pursued since 2014, to enhance Internet governance expertise and capacity at the national level in the Caribbean. The new thrust will accelerate the development of national multi-stakeholder structures to facilitate in-country implementation of regionally derived/harmonised activities. The 13th CIGF will also provide a regional platform to highlight and address current IG issues of Caribbean and global prominence, towards building consensus on appropriate Caribbean methodologies and formulating action plans for advancing Caribbean interests.


Trinidad and Tobago’s Draft National ICT Plan 2017 – 2021 (fastforward II) posted for comment

The Ministry of Public Administration and Communications Trinidad and Tobago has drafted the National Information and Communications Technology (ICT) Strategic Plan 2017-2021, which has been dubbed fastforward II

You can view/download the 73 page document from MPAC’s website or direct download the Draft NICT Plan 2017-2021 (PDF ; 2MB) from TTCS’s website.

The TTCS is building a Google document similar as was done for the Trinidad and Tobago Computer Society comments on the Trinidad and Tobago Cybercrime Bill.

One can submit comments on the draft National ICT plan 2017-2021 via an online form on MPAC’s website.

From the executive summary of Fastforward II :

“fastforward II is Trinidad and Tobago’s five-year National Information Communications Technology (NICT) Plan for 2017 to 2021. The result of co-creation, fastforward II is driven by the needs and priorities of the Government, business, and the people of Trinidad and Tobago—as well as the country’s regional and international obligations. The Plan outlines the NICT Agenda, it builds on our past performance in ICT, and it declares a bold vision to see: empowered people, competitive businesses, and transformational government, through ICT…..

…….The Vision of fastforward II is ultimately to support the National Development Strategy 2016–2030, Vision 2030, which outlines the country’s aspiration to attain “first world nation status” by 2030. Whilst supporting Vision 2030, fastforward II is also expected to meet the country’s anticipated social and economic needs. Converging these needs with the potential of ICT, five Strategic Thrusts are proposed to realise the National ICT Vision. They are:

  1. Improving Connectivity
  2. Increasing Human Capacity
  3. Enhancing Public Service Delivery
  4. Fostering Economic Development
  5. Advancing Environmental and Societal Benefit”


Latin American & Caribbean Internet Governance Forum (LACIGF) from 2 to 4 August 2017 ; how to watch #LACIGF10 online

(updated August 3 2017 : to include YouTube links for today’s LACIGF sessions)

The tenth edition of the Latin American & Caribbean Internet Governance Forum (LACIGF) meeting is taking place in Panama City, Panama, on 2-4 August 2017.

What is LACIGF? LACIGF is the Regional Latin American and Caribbean Preparatory Meeting for the Internet Governance Forum. The event has been held annually since 2008 and provides a space for multisectoral dialogue where government, private sector, technical community, academia and civil society organization representatives present and discuss their points of view on the Internet Governance agenda for the region.

The LACIGF agenda shows the times of the various Internet Governance sessions over the 3 days. Note that the times are local to Panama which is 1 hour earlier than the time in Trinidad and Tobago. Therefore, one must add one hour to the times listed in the LACIGF agenda.

At least two sessions will feature panelists from the Caribbean

  • Thursday August 3 2017 at 12noon  – 2pm (local time in Trinidad & Tobago)
    Integrating the Sustainable Development Objectives (SDOs) and Internet Governance
  • Friday, August 4th 2017 at 10am – 11:30am (local time in Trinidad and Tobago)
    Local spaces for Internet Governance dialogue. Progress in the various discussions

The sessions at LACIGF 10 are streamed on YouTube via the LACNIC’s YouTube channel :

Trinidad and Tobago Computer Society comments on the Trinidad and Tobago Cybercrime Bill

The Trinidad and Tobago Computer Society (TTCS) has sent their comments on the Trinidad and Tobago Cybercrime Bill (PDF ; 242K) to the Joint Select Committee of the Trinidad and Tobago Parliament on Friday June 16 2017.

View/Read the TTCS comments on the Cybercrime Bill (PDF ; 242K)

Some of the general areas of concern regarding the Cybercrime Bill noted in our comments:

  1. Suppression of free speech and the work of journalists
    It is important to note that many of the clauses in this Bill can be applied to  journalists carrying out their duties, and/or the free speech of private citizens, as well as to persons who are attempting, in the public interest, to report misconduct (aka whistleblowers). In the interest of support of the Fourth Estate as well as the principles of Free Speech enshrined in our Constitution, this Bill requires urgent complementary whistleblower/journalist protection via legislation.
  2. Excessive Penalties
    A number of sections outline penalties of $100,000 to $3,000,000. These are non-trivial amounts that far exceed the penalties in other areas that many would view as more serious – for example drunk driving. We wonder if the concept of proportionality could be incorporated in this act. The quantum of penalties will have chilling effect on the legitimate use of computers and networks, for example, students learning about computer security and security professionals investigating vulnerabilities on behalf of their clients.
  3. Collateral Damage
    The general trend in technology has been to move towards using shared server resources in the cloud. This opens up the possibility that data and equipment in use by accused persons may be simultaneously used by other persons unrelated to the accused and may thus be unduly affected by the shutdown and/or seizure of such equipment and data. Care must be taken to protect those who are not party to the criminal activities of other persons.
  4. Potential for Censorship and Abuse
    In the interest of protecting the rights of citizens, we believe that all requests for access systems and data should be approved by the Judiciary via the application for, and receipt of, a warrant. This judicial warrant would ensure that any potential for abuse by the State, or its agents, would be mitigated.
  5. Self Incrimination
    Several sections of this Bill seem to run afoul of the Constitution’s directive that persons are protected from self incrimination, for example, the requirement that persons unlock their phones or decrypt their data in furtherance of an investigation. This is a dangerous issue and should be reconsidered.
  6. Training
    It is highly likely that the Courts and Trinidad and Tobago Police Service will be called on to deal many cases under this legislation. As such, it is critical that officers of both agencies receive training in some of technical issues surrounding cyber crime. In this regard the TTCS would welcome the opportunity to assist in providing this training and any specialized advice when required.

The comments were put together by the TTCS based on

Many thanks to the contributors who helped with reviewing and commenting on the bill. For those interested in discussing and sharing ideas about computing, related technologies and related social issues are discussed, do join our announcement mailing list.

TTCS near final draft comments on the Trinidad and Tobago Cybercrime Bill 2017

The Trinidad and Tobago Computer Society (TTCS) has posted a near final draft version of its comments on the Cybercrime Bill 2017 based on the discussions from the Trinidad and Tobago Computer Society lime on Wednesday June 7 2017, comments from subscribers on the TTCS announcement mailing list and a followup TTCS F2F meeting on Tuesday June 13 2017, online comments received following the posting of the TTCS draft comments on the Trinidad and Tobago Cybercrime Bill 2017 on Tuesday June 13 and a online TTCS conference call on Thursday June 15 2017.

With the deadline of Friday June 16 for submission of comments to the Joint Select Committee of the Trinidad and Tobago Parliament , you can view and comment on the Google document of the TTCS near final draft comments on the Cybercrime Bill 2017 – you do not need a Google account to comment on the document.

View/Comment TTCS near final draft comments on Cybercrime Bill 2017