The impact of cybersecurity on the financial sector in Jamaica

Published date08 February 2022
Date08 February 2022
Subject MatterAccounting & finance,Financial risk/company failure,Financial crime
AuthorLauri Smikle
The impact of cybersecurity on
the nancial sector in Jamaica
Lauri Smikle
Faculty of Law, University of the West Indies, Kingston, Jamaica
Purpose Jamaica continues to experience nancial crimes particularly in cyberspace including e-fraud,
identity theft, credit card forging, money laundering and terrorist activities. Spoong, spamming, virus
propagation, spear phishing, buffer overow and denial of service continue to be weaknesses found in
organizations cybersecurity in Jamaica. With the emergence of cryptocurrency and digital currency it is
important that Jamaicauses intelligence led policing and data analysis to reduce and prevent nancialcrimes
such as money launderingand corruption proceeds.
Design/methodology/approach Literature review; review of domesticlegislation; review of current
matters in courts.
Findings Cybersecurityis no longer a pure computer security issue but instead, cybersecurityis seen as a
national policy matter because theillicit use of cyberspace could have a signicant impact on the nancial
sector in Jamaica. Cyberattackshave been successfully targeting the nancial sectorworldwide. While much
of the efforts and resources to address the risk imposed by these cyberattacks are directed at developed
economies, far less attentionhas been devoted to developing nations. Because manyof these nations such as
Jamaica have modest cybercapabilities, their ability to respond to cyberattackscan be limited, yet they need
to respond to theseattacks to protect their critical nancial infrastructure.
Originality/value There are few scholarly articlesthat focus on cybersecurity issues and legislationin
Keywords Jamaica, Financial crime, Cybersecurity
Paper type Research paper
Since Jamaica became an independent state, it has gone through a series of major changes
which were aimed at deregulation and liberalization of the economy. In the past few years,
the development has been aimed at creating a exible and effective regulatory framework
which can respond to global, regional and domesticnancial events as well as dealing with
risks arising within the nancialsector.
There has been an increase in e-fraud, and this is mainly due to difculties of obtaining
credit in the nancial sector. Further, there are largesums of money involved in e-banking.
With the increasing reliance on e-banking and the internet as a source of business,
education and pleasure, a new form of criminal activity has arisen, that is, cybercrime.
Cybercrime can encompass many variances on a theme and can stem from identity theft,
credit card forging to money laundering and terrorist activities(Chambers and Turksen,
As technology advances and restrictions removed from products and services provided
by nancial institutions,this produced more sophisticated and ingenuous criminals who are
able to adapt to changes in nancial systems.This has made challenge of nancial crimes in
cyberspace more difcult to understand, detect, restrain and prosecute. Consequently, the
responsibilities given to central banks via banking regulations have not focused on anti-
fraud measures in relation to e-banking and cybercrime activities. For example, the
Journalof Financial Crime
Vol.30 No. 1, 2023
pp. 86-96
© Emerald Publishing Limited
DOI 10.1108/JFC-12-2021-0259
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