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Australia news live: new $590m cyber strategy to make nation a ‘harder target’ f0r hackers; concern over protest crackdown

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Sarah Basford Canales

More on cyber security from Sarah…

In addition to major funding injection, the federal government’s new cyber security strategy also proposes to establish new programs and review mechanisms.

For example, a free cyber health-check program will be created allowing small and medium businesses to assess their cyber security readiness.

The 2030 strategy also reveals a new no-fault, no-liability ransomware reporting obligation for businesses will be co-designed with industry and legislated to help the government stay “ahead of the threat”.

Cyber incident scenarios will be run through the office of the cyber coordinator to test the strength of industry and government arrangements. The government has said it will draft up incident response “playbooks” in response to the findings to better inform business leaders on how to deal with cyber attacks.

Cyber security minister Clare O’Neil said of the announcements:

“Our government is committed to consulting closely with industry every step of the way. Years of cooperative effort lie ahead, and we need to work together to make our country safe.”

Australia to become ‘world leader’ in cyber security by 2030

Sarah Basford Canales

Sarah Basford Canales

Clare O’Neil has set out her ambitious vision for Australia to become a world leader in cyber security by 2030, announcing a $586.9m funding sweetener to help the country “lead the frontier”.

The seven-year strategy, released on Wednesday, sets out the development of six “cyber shields” – strong businesses and citizens, safe technology, world-class threat sharing and blocking, protected critical infrastructure, sovereign capabilities, and resilient region and global leadership.

O’Neil said Australia was an attractive target due to it being wealthy and a fast adopter of new technologies.

The new strategy would help chart the country’s course to becoming a world leader against cyber crime, O’Neil said.

“Our strategy will make every Australian citizen, business, government agency and organisation a harder target. It will enable us to bounce back faster from attacks that we cannot prevent. We will put cyber criminals on notice, and we will fight back against the

The $586.9m funding committed will be in addition to the $2.3bn to 2030 set out for the existing Cyber Security Strategy, delivered by the Australian Signals Directorate.

The strategy’s action plan outlines the first two years are focused on addressing critical gaps across industry and government while the period between 2026 and 2028 will work on scaling “cyber maturity across the whole economy”.

From 2029, the action plan says Australia will “advance the global frontier of cyber security”.


Good morning and welcome to the rolling news blog. I’m Martin Farrer with some of our top overnight stories before I hand over shortly to my colleague Emily Wind.

The legal complexities around the release last week of indefinite detainees have deepened thanks to our exclusive story this morning which reveals how the government considered releasing the man at the centre of the case – while keeping the other 92 locked up. Documents published by the high court suggest home affairs minister Clare O’Neil was advised that using her powers to grant NZYQ a visa might neutralise the court challenge that last week led to the release of 92 others. And it’s a busy day for O’Neil, who is today announcing plans to make Australia a world leader in cyber security by 2030 with a $586.9 funding boost. More coming up on these stories.

Sixty legal advocacy and civil rights groups around Australia are teaming up today to call on governments to protect the right to protest in the face of recent “draconian anti-protest laws”. The issue has risen to the top of the political agenda amid rival mass protests by supporters of Palestine and Israel in recent weeks. New South Wales police are likely to be handed the power to lay charges for threats and incitement to violence based on race and religion in a reform introduced to state parliament.

The cost of living is still right at the top of that political agenda as a survey reveals today how people are having to pay $600 a week to rent in Australia’s most expensive suburbs. All of the top 10 are in Sydney, led by Warriewood in the northern beaches, although St Kilda in Melbourne is in joint 10th. Energy costs are also a burden on household expenses and a new report today shows that electricity network providers raked in $2bn from customers in “superprofits” in just one year. More coming up on these stories as well, plus later on Reserve Bank governor Michelle Bullock is making a speech in Sydney and might have something to say about the direction of interest rates.

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