Cybersecurity: Why now?

Public Good Studio
3 min readNov 14, 2023


What do we want? Pre-built systems! When do we want them? All the time! Or words to that effect. If you want digital solutions, the readymade or white-labeled answers promise ease, speed, and accessibility.

However, recent cybersecurity breaches, like those affecting Courts and other major players, show how this convenience often comes at a significant cost. The 2019 pandemic transformed our digital habits. It also amplified the risks lurking within these popular systems.

The problem with baked-in safety

Pre-built solutions, be they for e-commerce, telecommunications, or general systems infrastructure, offer quick deployment and widespread community support. They’re the off-the-shelf solutions to complex problems. However, the simplicity is superficial; the reality is a labyrinth of risks and vulnerabilities.

These platforms are akin to well-trodden paths — familiar and so, predictably, more susceptible to exploitation. The widespread adoption of free-to-use platforms like Magento or Wordpress means that sales infrastructure can become prime targets for cybercriminals. The issue is compounded by the fact that many IT administrators, in an effort to escape the complexities of custom solutions, opt for these pre-built systems without fully understanding or addressing their inherent risks.

The pandemic irrevocably altered the digital landscape. The boxed solution was the only (or most convenient) hope many organizations had — because adaptation is survival — they needed to expand their digital presences. We built Unqueue for e-commerce, and have witnessed a 400% YoY growth in sales since our launch in 2020 — it’s not because we’re the only one; it’s a trend. People are depending more and more on technology. This rapid digitalization, while necessary, has often been executed without a corresponding enhancement in security measures or due process around vital considerations like user experience, usability, and product-market fit.

Understanding Infrastructure

The current landscape demands we change how we approach our digital infrastructure. It’s not enough to deploy a system and hope for the best. Organizations need to invest in understanding their infrastructure and how it aligns with their specific operational and customer service needs.

Take, for example, a major player like Courts in the Caribbean e-commerce sector. Their reliance on a solution like Magento might stem more from a place of convenience or institutional inertia rather than a strategic decision. Considerate risk profiling helps leaders understand the implications, and we’re sure Courts’ leadership would have charted alternative paths if they understood better. PriceSmart uses a combination of Drupal and an AI-powered customer engagement tool called Bloomreach to serve their customers. This may be convenient, but it’s probably also a decision that’s close to the root of their recent cybersecurity problems.

The problems we’re noticing are not new ones, they are however going to have deeper ramifications as time passes. The main reason: online payments. People are now buying things online, not just storing passport photos and HR records. This changes the incentive of the bad actor, and should influence the decisions of the responsible CTO or IT manager.

We need to think about building a digital fortress, not just a facade. What we’re talking about here involves a blend of managed infrastructure for complex, high-risk areas and in-house development for aspects directly impacting the customer experience.

This approach enhances security, ensures a better fit with specific customer needs, and provides greater control over the overall customer experience. From a cybersecurity standpoint, the key is to adopt a proactive, rather than reactive, stance.

Regular security audits, continuous monitoring, and staying abreast of the latest threats are essential. In terms of cloud architecture, opting for the right managed service can offer robust security protocols, regular updates, and expert monitoring, reducing the risk of breaches.

In software development, the focus should be on building secure, scalable, and customer-centric solutions. This involves adhering to best practices in coding, investing in thorough testing, and ensuring that security is a foundational aspect of the development process and product scoping, not an afterthought.

The digital world is evolving, and with it, the nature of cybersecurity threats. For organizations like Courts, TSTT, and others, it’s time to move beyond the comfort zone of pre-built solutions and embrace a more nuanced, infrastructure-first approach. This path is undoubtedly harder, requiring more time, resources, and expertise. However, the payoff in terms of security, customer trust, and long-term sustainability is immeasurable.



Public Good Studio

Public Good Studio is an award-winning Caribbean venture studio with a people-first approach.