BTP attended the ICT Week hosted by the Caribbean Telecom Union

Bureau Telecommunications and Post St. Maarten (BTP) represented by Ms. Judianne Labega-Hoeve and Mr. Wijngaarde, participated in the ICT Week & Symposium in Antigua and Barbuda, which was hosted by the Caribbean Telecom Union (CTU).


During the ICT Week and Symposium different industry experts gave in depth presentations on a wide variety of Telecom related topics, and recent developments in de industry. Allot of emphasis was placed on some important financial matters such as mobile money, crypto currencies and in particular ‘Bitcoins’.


Crypto currency is a digital currency, created and held electronically, that can be used for trade purposes and to make payments. In more technical terms it can be described as a “Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System” that in the vast majority of countries around the world, is not regulated by central banks. Due to the absence of proper regulations, there are some concerns as it relates to safety and viability. But the use of cryptocurrencies such as bitcoins is already a reality, and it’s being utilized around the world to make online purchases. It’s therefore a development that regulators, lawmakers and governments globally should be paying close attention to, and finding ways to regulate.


Also high on the agenda was Cyber Crime; a fast-growing area of crime whereby criminals conduct illegal activities by utilizing ICT networks or the internet. Caribbean Countries are looking into ways to tackle this issue together, and developing an Ecosystem of Professionals. One of the Key elements to mitigate Cyber related issues in the Caribbean is prevention, and creating public awareness must form an integral part any security plan that comes to the table.  As mentioned by a Caribbean Cyber Security Expert, Mr. Deon Olton, “It’s not only a government responsibility”. Government, Law Makers, Regulators, Businesses, ICT Sector and individuals should all work together, and making ongoing efforts to drive the importance of Cyber Security.


Also present at the ICT Week & Symposium was the prosecutor of Sint Maarten, Mr. Martin van Nes, who is recognizing the importance of collaboration within the region to tackle Cyber Crime, and keeping the internet & ICT networks safe.


Bureau Telecommunications and Post St. Maarten would like to again remind the general public that cyber crime should always be reported to the appropriate law enforcement agencies. Only by reporting cyber crime, investigative procedures can be initiated. This is crucial in bringing perpetrators to justice.