Closing Remarks

by the

Governor of the Central Bank of Suriname

Drs. Glenn H. Gersie

On the occasion of the Caribbean Cyber security & Cyber Drill July 4, 2017

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Distinguished guests and participants in this seminar, good afternoon.                  

It gives me great pleasure to be with you today for a moment to share some thoughts with you and to address you at the closing of this gathering that mainly focused on protecting the financial system against cyber-attacks.

Who could have known that this meeting was to be conducted following only days after one of the worst cyber-attacks the world was to be confronted with? It was reported that this attack impacted, not speak of destroyed, many of the world's biggest companies. Yes, the intent was to destroy and not to construct, to harm and not to add value. Events as these emphasize the necessity of us being here today and us to continue to collaborate to protect and to preserve our financial systems and our economies.  Why is it that creative minds use their God given talents for destruction rather than for construction? As we don’t have the answers to this question and as we here lack the capacity to read dark minds, we are urged to remain vigilant, to protect and to preserve, while we’ll allow law enforcement of course to do its’ job.

Ladies and gentlemen,

Cyber-security is needed in both the public and the private sector. I’m confident that intense but constructive panel discussions that you, cyber security experts, representatives from the financial sector and you, service providers, had during the workshop, will surely contribute to awareness and to professionalism when it comes to cyber-security. 

As Governor of the Central Bank I’m really interested in your findings and in your proposals to duly protect and to increase the safety of our systems and of our economies. It needs no further explanation how harmful any event whereby a payment system is stalled due to a cyber-attack can be to the economy. I’m furthermore fully aware of new trends in the world whereby digital money is introduced to drastically reduce or to replace cash payments. This has my interest, as financial inclusion constitutes a main priority in my policies too.

The Central Bank of Suriname aims at price and exchange rate stability, it acts as a guardian for the financial sector; it is banker to the commercial banks; and is cashier, banker and financial advisor to the Government. The Bank is also in charge of the supervision of the banking, credit union, insurance, and pension systems. The Bank is currently spearheading a set of fundamental reforms aimed at modernizing the financial system as a whole and increasing the efficiency, stability and integrity of financial management in general. So now you know why I accepted the invitation to speak here today. I came to inform you that we from the Central Bank have a vested interest in cyber-security!

My staff provided me with information that I want to share with you.

Taking a step back and looking at the increasing importance of the international cyber security industry, we draw the following conclusions.

The entire sector grew to an estimated USD 120 billion up from only 3.5 billion in 2004. A recent report of security researchers (Kaspersky Labs) states that banks and other financial institutions are spending around three times more the amount on cyber security than non-financial organizations.

 This is no surprise, since market analysis also depict that the traditional financial sector transforms into a sector with a strong digital presence in an increasingly rapid tempo. This shift provides a multitude of opportunities especially for developing countries like Suriname, since a correct and secure implementation of digital financial services can reach large target groups; in particular those in remote areas. However, if the advancements are not adequately guided and structured there is a significant chance that incidents or breaches will have harmful impacts on the economy, on commercial organizations and on private citizens.

Ladies and gentlemen, as you all know, each financial system is built on trust and stability. We have to be able to rely on our institutions and the facilities that they offer. The Central Bank's main responsibility in a digital era is to provide a stable national financial system. Clearly the prudential tasks of institutions like the one I’m heading have been expanded tremendously. We are challenged to provide a sound legal platform through which new digital financial services can be offered to the several sectors in our societies.

 The international financial system endures thousands of attacks each month. Only a few attacks have so far been successful thanks to security measures that have been put in place. I must add that in my view those attacks that at first will be characterized as successful should be labeled with failed if a system is able to be up and running within a short time span (confidential data in the hands of criminals will however remain an issue).

I strongly believe that each company with a high dependence on digital technology should invest in cyber security by:

  • Adopting risk management and information security;
  • Providing for a governance structure where Risk management and Information Security play a pivotal role.

The Central Bank of Suriname has already made progress in the areas of information security and risk management. We invest in risk management training, employee awareness and we make great efforts to comply with the ISO27001 (Information Security) guidelines.  As supervisor of the financial system, we have the Surinamese National Payment System (SNEPS) implemented, which provides control mechanisms in line with among others anti-money laundering (AML) regulations.

Since last year, we are hosting information security meetings to offer a platform for knowledge sharing and collaboration to information security officers from commercial banks in Suriname. We also maintain international relations e.g. with Swift, with the Cyber security Information Sharing Group of regional Central Banks and we joined earlier initiatives to form a national CSIRT, (Computer Security Incident Response Team).  I hope that the discussions during this congress will help with the formalization of the CSIRT group.

In closing, I urge each participant in this workshop, in particular those from the financial sector, to contribute to awareness of cyber security in Suriname from his/her own perspective and expertise. That’s how it begins!  As Governor of the Central Bank I promise that you’ll have my support.

 

Thank you for your attention

 

Exchange RatesJune 18th and until further notice

Currency Buying Selling
USD 7,406 7,530
EUR 8,651 8,794
GBP 9,838 10,083
ANG 4,117 4,234
AWG 4,117 4,234
BRL 1,971 2,039
TTD 1,087 1,121
BBD 3,672 3,765
XCD 2,716 2,786
PER 100 GYD 3,494 3,612

Gold CertificatesJune 18th and until further notice

Coupon SRD
5 gram 3.154,98
10 gram 6.309,96
50 gram 31.549,81
100 gram 63.099,63
500 gram 315.498,13
1000 gram 630.996,25
Gold LME: USD 1.303,20 /tr.oz.

Inflation

  Average End-of-period
2012 5.0 4.3
2013 1.9 0.6
2014 3.4 3.9
2015 6.9 25.1
2016 55.5 52.4
2017 22.0  9.2 
     
2017 Month-to-month Year-to-year
Jan 0.7 48.7
Feb 0.6 45.3
Mar 1.0 41.8
Apr 0.9 30.8
May 0.5 23.0
Jun 1.2 19.7
Jul 1.4 19.4
Aug 0.6 16.2
Sep 1.1 11.7
Oct 0.7 10.8
Nov 0.0 9.2
Dec 0.2 9.2
     
2018 Month-to-month Year-to-year
Jan 0.6 9.1
Feb 1.0 9.6
Mar 0.1 8.6

 

WisselkoersenJune 18 en tot nader order

Geldsoort Aankoop Verkoop
USD 7,406 7,530
EUR 8,651 8,794
GBP 9,838 10,083
ANG 4,117 4,234
AWG 4,117 4,234
BRL 1,971 2,039
TTD 1,087 1,121
BBD 3,672 3,765
XCD 2,716 2,786
PER 100 GYD 3,494 3,612
CNY 1,141 1,178

GoudcertificatenJune 18 en tot nader order

Coupure SRD
5 gram 3.154,98
10 gram 6.309,96
50 gram 31.549,81
100 gram 63.099,63
500 gram 315.498,13
1000 gram 630.996,25
Gold LME: USD 1.303,20 /tr.oz.

Inflatie

  Average End-of-period
2012 5.0 4.3
2013 1.9 0.6
2014 3.4 3.9
2015 6.9 25.1
2016 55.5 52.4
2017 22.0  9.2 
     
2017 Month-to-month Year-to-year
Jan 0.7 48.7
Feb 0.6 45.3
Mar 1.0 41.8
Apr 0.9 30.8
May 0.5 23.0
Jun 1.2 19.7
Jul 1.4 19.4
Aug 0.6 16.2
Sep 1.1 11.7
Oct 0.7 10.8
Nov 0.0 9.2
Dec 0.2 9.2
     
2018 Month-to-month Year-to-year
Jan 0.6 9.1
Feb 1.0 9.6
Mar 0.1 8.6

 

Weekbalans