Countering cyber crime with a data protection software system, the Bahamas Government provides security of information to citizens and residents throughout the archipelago. So says State Minister for Finance, the Hon. Michael Halkitis, M.P.

Yesterday, the State Minister provided remarks at a National Training Symposium on data protection under the theme *’Data Protection in a 21st Century World’*. The world is changing and the flow of information between jurisdictions is critical to survival in a world connected by technology. In The Bahamas, the Minister said, data protection is vital to the sustainability of the banking and financial systems, and the protection of personal information. He further noted that data protection provisions are included in various TIEA agreements.

The Data Protection (Privacy of Personal Information) Act, 2003, was introduced in The Bahamas as a part of a three piece legislative package to promote e-commerce. Privacy is a fundamental right recognised in the United Nations Declaration of Human Rights, as well as in the Bahamian Constitution. *”Consumers need to be assured that there are uniform sets of rules which deal with the global transmission of their personal information,”* said Minister Halkitis. In this connection, the Ministry of Finance is committed to ensuring that The Bahamas is compliant with international standards in relation to the collection, use, and disclosure of data.

He congratulated the Data Commissioner and her staff for taking such a proactive and bold step in establishing a national training symposium on data protection. Noting the collaborative approach bringing together industry stakeholders from both the public and private sectors, the Minister said the synchronised effort of the public and private sector is critical to the development of the nation.

*Photo courtesy of BIS*