Niel Harper

Niel Harper

Managing Director
Joined on March 10, 2017 – Barbados
Total Post Views: 69,493


Niel Harper is the Founder & Managing Director of Octave Consulting Group, a management consulting firm that assists organizations in combating online threats and safeguarding digital assets. The organization works with business leaders to not only prevent and respond to cyber attacks, but to effectively manage the full spectrum of cyber risks in a manner that adds business value and creates market opportunities. The portfolio of services delivered by Octave Consulting includes CIO, CISO and board advisory; cyber strategy; IT auditing; IT service management; business continuity management; and cyber law (data protection, privacy and consumer protection). Throughout his career, he has had management responsibility, consulting engagements, and short-term assignments in over 20 countries.

Additionally, he works with the Internet Society where he is programme lead for their global education and leadership development programme that focuses on preparing the next generation of Internet leaders to address the complex issues at the intersection of technology, policy, and business. The programme includes various elements such as fellowships, leadership (un)conferences, online learning, and face-to-face training covering multidisciplinary areas such as access, critical infrastructure, public policy, regulatory frameworks, cybersecurity, and ICTs for development (ICT4D).

For his achievements across the spectrum of ICTs for development (ICT4D), Niel was recognized by the World Economic Forum as a Young Global Leader in 2014. This honour is bestowed each year to recognize the most distinguished leaders under the age of 40, nominated from around the world. Previous members of the Forum of Young Global Leaders include Jack Ma, Founder of Alibaba, Michael Schumacher, Formula 1 Champion, and Mark Zuckerberg, Founder of Facebook. Niel has obtained a Master of Laws (LLM) in Internet Law & Policy from the University of Strathclyde, a Master of Business Administration (MBA) from the University of Leicester, and a Post Graduate Diploma (PgDip) in Telecoms Regulation & Policy from the University of the West Indies. He also holds a number of industry certifications in IT auditing, information security, and business continuity management.

Except where otherwise noted, all postings by Niel Harper on CircleID are licensed under a Creative Commons License.

Featured Blogs

Where’s the Blockchain Killer App? Maybe It’s Buried Underneath All the Hype!

In recent times, I've been struggling to determine where blockchain has demonstrated its immensely promised value, delivered true market or stakeholder value, or disrupted an existing ecosystem. And thus far, what I keep coming up with is that "blockchain is truly a solution searching for a problem." Most of all, many of its enthusiasts and proponents are generally conceptual thinkers and/or snake oil salespersons who have little to no experience delivering secure, integrated, complex systems. more

Should Domain Names be Considered 'Contracts for Service' or 'Property Rights'?

The legal status of domain names is one of the most hotly debated topics with regards to evolving property rights and how they should be applied to technological and intellectual property 'innovations' in cyberspace. At present, there are two opposing factions on this topic: On one hand, there are those who maintain that domain names should be considered as contracts for services, which originate from the contractual agreement between the registrant and the registrar. more

Why Bitcoin Will Not Solve the Caribbean's Financial Inclusion Woes

There's a deluge of hype around Bitcoin and blockchain technologies right now, and policymakers and regulators in the Caribbean are doing their best to wrap their heads around the advantages and disadvantages of this virtual currency. Similar questions are being contemplated in the ICTs for development (ICT4D) community, taking into account that electronic money (e-money) platforms such as Safaricom's M-PESA have essentially solved the financial inclusion quandary for millions of people in Kenya. more

Does ICANN's UDRP Preserve Free Speech and Allow Room for Criticism?

The phenomenal growth of the Internet has resulted in a proliferation of domain names. The explosion of '.com' registrations coincided with an increase in domain name disputes, and with it the legal branch of intellectual property devolved into virtual mayhem. ICANN's Uniform Domain-Name Dispute-Resolution Policy (UDRP) was created... The UDRP was brought into force in October 1999, and it can be said that it has contributed handily to the resolution of domain name disputes. However, deeper investigation into the UDRP paints a different picture. more

8 Reasons Why Cybersecurity Strategy and Business Operations are Inseparable

In modern society, there is one fact that is unquestionable: The hyper-connectivity of the digital economy is inescapable. A financial institution without an online presence or omni-channel strategy will cease to be competitive. Universities (for-profit or non-profit) must develop and continuously evolve their online learning capabilities if they are to stay relevant. Online retailers are quickly outpacing and rendering their 'brick-and-mortar' counterparts irrelevant. more