Revise the Cyber Bill Now
Isn’t it ironic that the only T&T government administration that was ever accused of what is known here as “emailgate” is piloting a Cyber Crime Bill.
The law enforcement agency charged with investigating that incident is still investigating and in the meanwhile the man who was originally given the assignment has retired from the service and now occupies another government cushy job.
People on the ground are saying that the proposal for this bill suddenly popped up after the government accused the opposition of hacking into their email accounts. Almost as if the government is making a move to protect itself.
The proposal, still to be debated in parliament, made international news because it is so unsual for a country like T&T to consider a cyber bill. An article in the Epoch Times had the headline "Trinidad and Tobago's Cyber Crime Bill May Be the Beginning of an Already Failed Quest"
Failed before we start they say. Can they be right? They say it will cost billions of dollars with no appreciable rewards. Here are the 3 main reasons they gave;
1. Most technology companies are very secretive with user information; they would not even share it with the US Government. Why will they share it with the T&T government?
2. 98 percent of our cyber infrastructure is foreign based like Google and Yahoo. (Initially, in the emailgate scandal, the police publicly stated they were stymied by Google. The never said anything about why they could not access the TSTT accounts.)
3. The country’s cyber infrastructure can be accessed from as far away as Russia, China or India where our laws are meaningless.
The article quoted the expert as saying that: “…too many preceding cases have cost other countries hundreds of millions of lost dollars in their efforts to extradite accused cyber criminals from uncooperative jurisdictions; – since it is a quest that often fails”
Read the article here.
The fact is that this country does needs defensive cyber security. The bill as it is proposed intends to spend millions of dollars to identify and prosecute cyber criminals.
Once again, this is democracy at work. This is our elected government and what they say we need, we need. The fact still remains that the country will lose millions if this bill passes.
But who is complaining.