The government for the first time extensively outlined its strategy to implement a countrywide cybersecurity system to protect key state functions and private companies from possible electronic threats.
The failure of Congress to ratify the proposed 864 billion peso (US$15.4 billion) 2004 national budget could leave the government with insufficient funds to spend for information technology projects this year. Instead of enacting the 2004 budget, where a proposed additional one billion pesos would have been allocated for IT initiatives, senators and congressmen re-enacted the 804 billion peso 2003 budget after failing to agree on certain issues concerning the 2004 budget proposal.
As expected, only telecommunication companies will be allowed to offer voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) services based on the draft guidelines prepared by the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC).
Local initiatives to develop services based on the wireless networking technology called wireless fidelity (Wi-Fi) have been relegated to the freezer. After a grand takeoff in June, Wi-Fi services came crashing down this month after government regulators shot it down.