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Tech guru praises Bermuda’s cybersecurity regulations

Science and advocate: Tom Ilube (Photograph by Blaire Simmons)

A world-renowned tech expert has applauded Bermuda’s 2018 Digital Assets Business Act, calling it “well thought out”, “high-quality” and “comprehensive” regulation.

Tom Ilube, chief executive officer of London-based Crossword Cybersecurity, told the Hamilton Rotary Club: “Crucially, (the Act) has included cybersecurity rules in its legislation that say if an organisation is getting into this area it must have cybersecurity audits and penetration testing.”

Penetration testing is when authorised tech experts attempt to hack into a computer system to find its security weaknesses so that they can be fixed.

Mr Ilube said Bermuda is showing the world that although it wants to be friendly to financial technology, and attract jobs to the industry, it also wants to be very secure.

“Bermuda is saying we want people to know that if a cybersecurity company, a cryptocurrency company or a digital company is based in Bermuda, you can trust that its cybersecurity is rock solid, because built into the legislation is the need to be audited from a cybersecurity point of view, and undergo penetration testing,” he said.

He spoke to the club, via Zoom link, on the nature of Bitcoin, blockchain and cybersecurity.

“The whole area of Bitcoin and blockchain and cryptocurrencies is a new, fascinating evolving area which you will hear more and more about,” Mr Ilube said. “Bermuda is really understanding this area and doing a lot of work.”

He said Bermuda is very friendly and positive towards the emerging area of crypto currencies and fintech.

“That I see as really positive,” Mr Ilube said.

He said this was one of the reasons Crossword is particularly interested and keen to be involved in cybersecurity in Bermuda. It already has at least one client on the island.

“We have real deep expertise working with companies,” he said. “Not just crypto currencies, but these days any company needs to be audited from a cybersecurity point of view. There needs to be penetration testing.”

In 2017, Powerlist Media ranked Mr Ilube as the most powerful African, or person of African heritage, in Britain.

He has founded tech companies such as online credit reference service Noddle, Garlik, an online identity company, and most recently Crossword Cybersecurity, which was admitted to the Alternative Investment Market on the London Stock Exchange in 2018.

He also set up The African Science Academy, the first science and technology school for girls in Ghana, and the Hammersmith Academy in West London, now considered one of Britain’s most innovative tech schools.

In 2019, members of the Bermuda Technical Institute Association invited Mr Ilube to the island to talk about his experience creating technology schools.

“The team in Bermuda was very interested to learning how you go about creating new schools that can engage with young people who are interested in technology if you want to try and upskill the country,” Mr Ilube said. “I shared my experience over a period of a week, in a number of different conversations.”

He said he looked forward to doing more work in Bermuda.

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Published March 24, 2022 at 7:49 am (Updated March 24, 2022 at 7:49 am)

Tech guru praises Bermuda’s cybersecurity regulations

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