Feeds

Costa Rican telco lobbies to criminalise VoIP

Holding back the tide

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction

Costa Rica's state-owned telecommunications monopoly is lobbying to criminalise internet telephony. The Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad (ICE) is pushing for stringent controls over VoIP that at their most draconian could make internet telephony a crime, Costa Rican daily La Nación reports.

According to the paper, 20 per cent of Costa Rica international calls are made using VoIP rather than over conventional phone circuits. ICE argues that VoIP ought to be treated as a substitute telephone service and regulated more tightly than data services. It reckons tough rules against "unlicensed operators", including criminal sanctions if necessary, are needed.

P2P VoIP services such as Skype are popular in Central America. Vonage and other US carriers also sell VoIP services in Costa Rica and its neighbours. These market developments threaten the revenues of incumbent telecoms operators. Panama has also sought to curtail internet telephony, in response to loss of revenues which could have been ploughed back into the country's telecoms infrastructure. Such concerns may be reasonable, but it is doubtful if technical measures such as blocking ports used by VoIP traffic will ultimately prove effective. There's also the risk that protecting state telco revenues could harm a country's wider economy.

Costa Rica is a centre for software development in Central America. La Nación quotes unnamed officials at a software development agency who said that low-cost telephone services are vital to the growth of the country's software development and outsourcing businesses. ®

Related stories

Vonage offers VoIP mobile phone
Appeals court tells state to keep hands off VoIP
VoIP builds momentum in developing world
Cisco refreshes IP convergence line
Panama bans voice over IP

Related links

La Nación report (in Spanish - registration required)

Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction

More from The Register

next story
This time it's 'Personal': new Office 365 sub covers just two devices
Redmond also brings Office into Google's back yard
Kingston DataTraveler MicroDuo: Turn your phone into a 72GB beast
USB-usiness in the front, micro-USB party in the back
Dropbox defends fantastically badly timed Condoleezza Rice appointment
'Nothing is going to change with Dr. Rice's appointment,' file sharer promises
BOFH: Oh DO tell us what you think. *CLICK*
$%%&amp Oh dear, we've been cut *CLICK* Well hello *CLICK* You're breaking up...
AMD's 'Seattle' 64-bit ARM server chips now sampling, set to launch in late 2014
But they won't appear in SeaMicro Fabric Compute Systems anytime soon
Amazon reveals its Google-killing 'R3' server instances
A mega-memory instance that never forgets
Cisco reps flog Whiptail's Invicta arrays against EMC and Pure
Storage reseller report reveals who's selling what
Microsoft builds teleporter weapon to send VMware into Azure
Updated Virtual Machine Converter now converts Linux VMs too
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.