Barbados Entrepreneurship Foundation closer to 11/11/11 ON: LEX Caribbean Unlocks Wi-Fi

BEF Director Melanie Jones - " This is good for visitors to the island as well as locals and is good for domestic commerce, international business and tourism. The rendering of Barbados into a Wi-Fi island will make Barbados truly competitive in the global arena and show that it is serious about embracing technology and affording people connectivity to an extent that many other nations have yet to do."

In January 2010 the Barbados Entrepreneurship Foundation (BEF) launched a mission to provide free Wi-Fi connectivity around Barbados by November 11th, 2011. Since then the Foundation has been steadily encouraging companies and individuals throughout the island to unlock their Wi-Fi so as to realise the vision which drives this mission.

Last Tuesday, 24th May, LEX Caribbean, a leading law firm on the Island, with offices in Trinidad and Tobago, Jamaica and London as well was the latest company to unlock their Wi-Fi in furtherance of the BEF initiative. LEX Caribbean now provides free Wi-Fi access via a signal that extends approximately a kilometre to the West and North of their offices in Worthing, Barbados.

Melanie Jones, a partner of the firm and also, in her individual capacity, a director of the BEF and leader of its Business Facilitation Pillar has commented; “We have proudly subscribed to the BEF’s vision because we believe it will ensure to the benefit of all Barbadians. As a law firm we had to carefully analyse whether there was any risk in unlocking our Wi-Fi. Our internal information and our client information must be maintained in the strictest confidence and we must have the ability to scrutinise, monitor and control what is happening on our guest network in just the same way that we do on our internal network. Thanks to the enormous efforts of our IT team and Sunisle who provided the equipment and related services, we have a safe, secure system and are delighted at having been able to launch it.

We encourage others to do this and we assure them that our experience gained in researching, implementing and testing the system convinced us that it could be responsibly and securely executed upon. Moreover it also enables us to make a major contribution towards universal connectivity and against the worrying growth of the digital divide, which needs to be eliminated here in Barbados before it creates real disadvantage and loss of opportunity.”

This move by LEX Caribbean brings the goals of the BEF one step closer to fruition. Realization of the BEF’s island Wi-Fi vision will mean that entrepreneurs and people everywhere can continue to communicate and transact effectively as they move around Barbados, without being constrained by a specific geographical or physical location. This is good for visitors to the island as well as locals and is good for domestic commerce, international business and tourism. The rendering of Barbados into a Wi-Fi island will make Barbados truly competitive in the global arena and show that it is serious about embracing technology and affording people connectivity to an extent that many other nations have yet to do.

The success of this initiative will thus play a major role in the development of Barbados as the #1 entrepreneurial hub in the world by 2020 which is the vision of the BEF.

LEX Caribbean along with all the other businesses which have also chosen to unlock have been posted on a map online at http://www.wifispottr.com/. The website also provides accurate directions which guide the user from their exact location to the Wi-Fi location of their choice.

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