Jamaican regulator still undecided on VoIP blocking

26 Aug 2014

Jamaica’s Office of Utilities Regulation (OUR) has revealed that it could be some time before it makes a decision on the move by local mobile operators Digicel and LIME to block unlicensed voice-over-internet protocol (VoIP) services such as Viber and Numbuzz. A spokeswoman for the regulator, Elizabeth Bennett Marsh, has told the Jamaica Gleaner: ‘… this is not a simple issue, and will require a great level of research and analysis. Therefore, I would not venture to place a timeline as to when the OUR will complete its examination of this matter.’ At the start of July this year the two operators announced that they would no longer carry over-the-top (OTT) VoIP offerings, labelling them as illegal bypass services. The OUR immediately said it would investigate the matter, but then embarked on a consultation process which saw it request full statements from the two cellcos.