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Map of South America, a circuit board covers Columbia.

Colombia embraces the digital age

Cyber Security in South America

April 2016, Number 07.02

“The digital economy and Internet culture are spreading through the developing world at an increasingly rapid pace, and Colombia is leading the way. According to the Affordability Report 2014, published by the Alliance for Affordable Internet, Colombia ranked second among 51 emerging economies in Internet connectivity. The honorable second place ranking was due, the report concludes, to a series of efforts made by public and private entities to heavily invest in infrastructure in rural parts of the country, and a concerted effort to increase literacy in information and communications technology (ICT) issues. These two efforts helped the country provide access to the Internet to more than half the population.

Colombia’s effort boosted Internet users significantly —  from 2.2 million Internet connections in 2010 to over 9.2 million in 2014. In this regard, Colombia became the first country in Latin America with high-speed Internet coverage for all of its municipalities.

However, in recent years, the Internet has been increasingly used for criminal purposes. Since 2007, Colombia has been building a national strategy to combat cyber crime, focusing on cyber defense and cyber security...”

Excerpt from Alvaro José Chaves Guzmán, “Cyber Security in South America,” per Concordiam: Journal of European Security Defense Issues 7, No. 2, 2016: 60-63.

Alvaro José Chaves Guzmán is director of public security and infrastructure for the Colombian Ministry of National Defense. Previously, he served as advisor to the deputy minister of defense for politics and international affairs and was secretary to the deputy minister of defense for strategy and planning. He holds a bachelor’s in political science and a master’s in international relations and negotiation from Los Andes University.

This article reflects the views of the author and are not necessarily the official policy of the United States, Germany, or any other governments.