WannaCry and Cybersecurity

This was not a planned or researched blog post. I ended up in a conversation about WannaCry and gave my views as follows. This is what came to me from the top of my head. Firstly what is WannaCry? The name is a cheeky shortened form of WannaCrypt. According to wikipedia it is a ransomware attack using a cryptoworn targeting Windows machines. Basically they encrypt your data meaning you cannot access it and then demand a bitcoin ransom. See screenshot below.

WannaCry and Cybersecurity

This is what was written in one of our dailies – Cybersecurity expert: WannaCry reaches T&T. Mark Lyndersay (the writer) and Shiva I know.

My views on this and cybersecurity are

1) Organisations need dedicated positions to handle information security
2) We in the region can be guided by the CARICOM Single ICT Space which states it “will promote investment, create digital citizens, safeguard against cyber security threats and advance the CARICOM Digital Agenda 2025.”
3) Make cybersecurity relevant through exposure in the media (like you are doing)
4) Keep your software and systems updated
5) Training for IT staff and other staff
6) Know beforehand who you will contact when faced with something like this whether you are a person or organisation

And lastly the writer of this article hit the nail on the head with this – “software — and thus security — is never finished; it makes no sense, then, that payment is a one-time event”

And one more. We in Trinidad have a problem. There is no dedicated Minister of Technology and Ministry of Technology. Tech is too important to not have one. We need someone to take the lead on important matters in the tech space and at that level.

Share your thoughts with us in the comments below.

Press Release : TSTT to buy Massy Communications for 255 million

Press Release : TSTT to buy Massy Communications for 255 million

TSTT and Massy Communications Ltd., have entered into a Share Purchase Agreement (SPA), in which TSTT will purchase 100% shareholding of Massy Communications Ltd. The signing of the SPA, which is subject to the receipt of all regulatory approvals, was announced at a jointly-held press conference on Tuesday, May 2, 2017.This agreement capitalizes on the synergies of both companies in a manner that is mutually beneficial, along with their stakeholders, the local telecommunications industry and the people of Trinidad & Tobago.

TSTT is the largest telecommunications provider in Trinidad and Tobago. A significant element of TSTT’s current strategic plan involves the deployment of both wired and wireless high-speed broadband internet capabilities, throughout the entire nation. This includes investment in fibre optic solutions together with the associated technological infrastructure and systems.

Since 2006, Massy Communications, formerly Three Sixty Communications, has been building out its telecommunications network and expanding its services, to currently offer a range of services which include:

  • Fibre Optic (FTTH) Infrastructure deployment which is utilised to deliver High Speed Internet and IPTV to residential and SME customers.
  • Dedicated Internet/IP transit
  • Clear Channel Domestic/ Metro Ethernet and International Private Lines
  • International Wholesale Termination and Enterprise Voice Solutions

The telecommunications industry is dynamic, disruptive and intensely competitive. Additionally, consumer and business demands, particularly around high speed data continue to grow exponentially. These growing demands mandate telecom providers to continue to make advanced technological improvements at significant costs. These demands also result in the need to continue to recalibrate the business models employed.

In 2016, TSTT secured $1.9B in financing to create a Fibre to the Home (FTTH) solution throughout all of Trinidad and Tobago, including areas where Massy had already built out a robust network. This purchase will allow TSTT to have immediate access to an additional 34,000 homes passed with fibre. These homes are located in Diego Martin, Port of Spain, Trincity, Arima and San Fernando. This agreement therefore means that TSTT now has the benefit of incorporating these customers into its existing infrastructure.

The agreement includes all of Massy Communications infrastructure relating to both its Enterprise and Consumer networks, all existing Enterprise and Retail customers and the entire operational and business support systems. Therefore, this purchase will result in the acceleration of TSTT’s deployment of its next generation network. It will also facilitate the opportunity to immediately deliver a new suite of products and services to our existing customers in these areas. Furthermore, it will provide the Massy customers with the assurance that their future communications needs are well placed.

Of equal importance is the foreign exchange savings to Trinidad and Tobago that this agreement will foster. All telecommunications technological investments requires foreign exchange. Additionally, this agreement removes the duplication of significant capital expenditure, which both companies agreed is in the best economic, environmental and developmental interest of Trinidad and Tobago.

“Today marks a historical moment for the telecommunications industry in Trinidad and Tobago in general and for the management, staff and all stakeholders of TSTT in particular. As part of TSTT’s current $3.8B five-year strategic plan, we clearly indicated that we have one primary mandate and that is to transform TSTT from a legacy 20th century telecoms provider, to an agile broadband communications company. To achieve this goal, we always intended to employ a multi-prong approach, using both organic and inorganic growth strategies.
Our focus on high-speed broadband internet solutions is demonstrated by being the first and only local telecommunications provider to provide world-class fixed wireless LTE and mobile LTE technology and solutions. Our investment will also continue with our wired solutions where fibre implementation is pivotal. As such, this agreement significantly accelerates our deployment strategy which will benefit all of Trinidad and Tobago. We also see this as the beginning of a new robust alliance with the Massy Group.” Dr. Ronald Walcott, CEO – TSTT.

This transaction is a win for both companies, their employees and customers. Both organizations are clear that High Speed data and ICT development is a catalyst for national development. This agreement will make both companies stronger and more efficient in delivering on their strategic imperatives, by delivering the most technologically advanced broadband and HD TV solution to customers, along with exceptional customer service support. Citizens of Trinidad & Tobago will have access to fast, consistent, reliable, market leading internet speeds.

Technology and volunteering hand in hand with the Special Olympics

Technology and volunteering hand in hand with the Special Olympics

Samsung, as Premier sponsor of the III Latin American Special Olympics Games, provides the organization with the technology to make a significant sports experience, in which more than 800 athletes of 21 countries of the region participate.

During the III Latin American Special Olympics edition, Samsung awards the top 10 athletes in the regional competition with its most innovative products such as Gear Fit 2 –a state-of-the-art physical activity monitor with GPS included.

Samsung seeks to complement the training of athletes through the use of technology for the better control the development of their physical abilities with the Gear Fit2.

By the other hand, the Special Olympics chapter of Panama receives 19 Galaxy Tab E 9.6″ tablets, intended to supplement the educational programs that the Special Olympics carries out permanently and directly with young people with intellectual disabilities. These items, and 10 Samsung 360 cameras, will be used during the competitions of the III Latin American Games, to document and share the experiences of the athletes.

The provision of technology such as printers, Smart TVs and a virtual reality stand equipped with Samsung Gear VR for the facilities of the Olympic Village in the Hotel El Panama, as well as Galaxy J5 cell phones for communication between the directors of the delegations of the invited countries, are part of another of the contributions given to the games by the company seeking to strengthen the logistics and experience of the athletes during the event.

Samsung Volunteering for Social Inclusion

Prior to the III Latin American Games in Panama, Samsung’s regional collaborators joined as volunteers to support athletes in 9 countries in their preparation training by organizing Unified Sports games, which combine athletes with intellectual disabilities and those who do not to help them develop their physical abilities, in an exchange of talent, encouraging inclusion in the community through sport.

Regionally, 68 volunteers participated, donating up to 214 hours from countries such as Costa Rica, Honduras, Guatemala, Nicaragua, El Salvador, Ecuador, Venezuela, Jamaica, and Trinidad and Tobago.

During the III Latin American Games of Special Olympics in Panama from April 20 to the 27th, Samsung’s collaborators will continue to count hours of volunteering by supporting the athletes who will go to the volleyball courts, bowls and swimming pools, to give the best of themselves, representing and leaving their countries’ names high and above all, to live the emotion of sports competitions.

“Samsung, as an active and responsible member of the community, helps raise awareness of the challenges faced by young people with intellectual disabilities, promoting positive attitudes and behavioral changes to achieve the inclusion of these young people in everyday life,” said Nicole Orillac, Corporate Citizenship Manager for Samsung Electronics.

During this experience the volunteers were also inspired by the Olympics athletes for their demonstration of admirable dedication in their way of overcoming challenges and integration in our society.

For more information, visit the site samsung.com/latin or our social networks