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Australia to conduct national cyber-security review

Business and individual security to be tested by panel including Cisco security supremo

Australia will conduct a national “cyber-security review”.

Speaking today at the launch of the new Australian Cyber Security Centre in Canberra today, prime minister Tony Abbott put network security on par with physical security, said it is a guarantor of economic security and added “it is so important we keep one step ahead of this particular game” because the last such review was in 2008 and “in this area that is several lifetimes”.

The review will be conducted by a panel comprising Business Council of Australia CEO Jennifer Westacott, Telstra CISO Mike Burgess, Australian Strategic Policy Institute international cyber policy director Tobias Feakin and Cisco's US chief security officer John Stewart.

The panel has been given four jobs:

  • assess the risk of cyber attacks in the public and private sectors with a view to making our online systems more resilient to attack;
  • examine how government and industry can better work together to reduce the risk of cyber attacks;
  • assess how Government protects its networks and information; and
  • work to ensure we are one step ahead of the threats to government networks and critical infrastructure.
Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott

Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott announcing the review. Image: Screenshot of ABC News 24

The panel's been given six months to "explore how industry and the government can work together to make our online systems more resilient against attacks" and "look for practical ways to improve our national security and work with business to make online commerce more secure".

The new Centre brings together the network security arms of several Australian government agencies, namely the Australian Crime Commission, the Australian Federal Police, the cyber elements of the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation (ASIO), the Australian Signals Directorate and the Attorney-General’s Department Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT) Australia. ®

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