Chang touts building capacity to tackle cyber security concerns – Jamaica Gleaner

Jamaica’s economic recovery in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic has been on an upward trajectory with very strong potential in traditional and emerging industries and markets. However, in order to ensure the benefits of these prospects, Jamaicans must continue to pursue national security imperatives with the level of discipline, precision and collaboration of last year, according to Minister of National Security Dr Horace Chang.
“Jamaica’s strategic road map to sustainable development and growth cannot be separated from our vision of a society that is anchored by citizen security and public safety,” he told Thursday’s security seminar on ‘Defending and Securing Jamaica’s Development: A Strategic Security Analysis’ at the AC Hotel, New Kingston.
Chang said that Plan Secure Jamaica, the country’s comprehensive, strategic national security response, is aligned with the National Developmental Plan – Vision 2030, and in particular, with Goal 2 of Vision 2030 – to make Jamaica a secure, cohesive and just society. However, the vision can only be realised through the achievement of safety and security across the length and breadth of the country.
“Our experience with national security since Independence has demonstrated that we will only realise this outcome through collaborative efforts, strengthened capabilities, and community engagement. Our efforts to achieve safety and security are built on collaboration between law enforcement, defence, and other critical arms of our security architecture, to include cyber, financial investigations, forensics, corrections, border management, and customs,” Chang outlined.
According to the deputy prime minister, another critical area of activity to secure and defend Jamaica’s development has been strengthening the human, technological, infrastructural and operational capacity of the lead entities – the Jamaica Constabulary Force and the Jamaica Defence Force. And as security threats become diversified, cybersecurity has become an even more critical component of Jamaica’s security and defence strategy, Chang pointed out.
“Building capacity in this area for the JCF, JDF, and the Major Organized Crime and Anti-Corruption Agency (MOCA) will aid in counteracting the estimated annual $12-million loss to cybercrime. The MOCA has formed its Cyber Forensic Lab with the remit to investigate cybercrime breaches and conduct digital forensics investigations, while the JDF has included cybercrime as part of its domain.”
He said that the legislative agenda will also continue to receive high priority with several key pieces of legislation being amended or developed to provide the security forces with a robust legal framework to treat with current and emerging criminal activities.
Chang stressed the importance of continued solidarity, partnerships and support among ministries, departments and agencies of government in order for the country to achieve its national development goals and security imperatives.
“As leaders and policymakers within the national security space we must continue to be innovative and creative in our responses in order to match the ingenuity and sophistication of criminals. Security and defence are indispensable to our nation’s future development. We are fortunate that there already exists joint cooperation, collaboration and unity of effort among our security and defence entities,” he added.
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