ARIN’s 2019 Caribbean Outreach Program will focus on Internet Security and Resilience 

The American Registry for Internet Numbers (ARIN) has announced an expanded Caribbean outreach program for 2019, focusing on member outreach, internet security and resilience. The announcement comes at a time when several Caribbean stakeholders are calling for more attention to be paid to issues related to the overall resilience and security of the Internet in the region.

ARIN, one of five regional Internet registries worldwide, is a US-registered nonprofit that manages Internet number resources in several Caribbean territories, Canada and the United States. The organisation also supports the advance of the Internet by coordinating the development of community-driven policies for managing Internet Protocol number resources.

“Building upon ARIN’s mission to facilitate the advancement of the Internet through information and educational outreach, our 2019 Caribbean agenda focuses on raising awareness of critical internet infrastructure and practical strategies for strengthening internet security and resilience in the region,” said Bevil Wooding, ARIN’s Caribbean outreach liaison.

Wooding was speaking after the launch of the registry’s 2019 Caribbean outreach activities, held in the Turks and Caicos Islands on February 7.

In 2018, ARIN launched a series of outreach events under the tagline “ARIN in the Caribbean.” The events touched eight countries: Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, the British Virgin Islands, Grenada, Jamaica, St. Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, and the US Virgin Islands. The series attracted over 400 participants, including network operators, business leaders, regulators, and government officials.  The registry also created the ARIN Caribbean Forum as a dedicated interface for engaging three strategic communities: the technical community; Internet public policy stakeholders; and justice sector representatives, including officials from law enforcement and the judiciary. 

One outcome of the registry’s 2018 outreach has been the application by several governments for autonomous systems numbers and next-generation Internet Protocol numbers, called IPv6 addresses, to support national e-government initiatives. Last March, the St. Kitts and Nevis government became one of the first in the Caribbean to have its application for a unique identifier on the global Internet approved by ARIN.

“Our outreach events in the Caribbean have provided ARIN with new opportunities to hear directly from members in the region. They have also allowed us to introduce new audiences to ARIN’s mission and service. More importantly, we have been successful in attracting more Caribbean participation in ARIN’s leadership and in the ARIN policy development process,” Wooding said.

Last October, three Caribbean candidates—Peter Harrison, Alicia Trotman and Kerrie-Ann Richards—were elected to leadership roles at ARIN.  Collaborations with ARIN partners in the Caribbean have also increased. The Caribbean Telecommunications Union (CTU) collaborated with ARIN to host the inaugural CTU/ARIN Public Policy Forum. The Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) Commission and ARIN established a memorandum of understanding to collaborate on development of the Internet in the sub-region. The Caribbean Network Operators Group (CaribNOG) and ARIN deepened their collaboration by co-hosting a number of technical training workshops. ARIN also collaborated with LACNIC, ICANN, and ISOC on public awareness and disaster mitigation and response initiatives in the Caribbean.

The feedback ARIN received from its members over the past year has been used to develop its priorities in the Caribbean in 2019, Wooding said.

“ARIN plans to continue promoting capacity-building initiatives for the technical community, the adoption of IPv6; the establishment of autonomous networks; law enforcement inter-agency collaboration on Internet security incidents; and the creation of policy to support Internet development, resilience, and security. This year we intend to build on our work in these areas, and to continue fostering development and expansion of the ARIN community in the Caribbean.”