Cybermindz Launches to Protect Cyber Minds


Cybermindz will be launched as Australia’s first peer-led, cybersecurity mental health support.

This important initiative will be launched by the Hon Victor Dominello MP, NSW Minister for Customer Service and Digital, and the launch will be followed by a panel event of leading industry experts.

Cyber and internet industry leader Peter Coroneos, supported by a board and drawing from a national pool of over 400 accredited facilitators, is launching a powerful, innovative, dedicated not-for-profit mental health initiative for the cyber sector and beyond:

Organisations today depend on cybersecurity teams, both internal and external, to protect us from a growing barrage of cyber threats across a range of attack surfaces.

Cybercriminals, hackers, nation states and other bad actors also experienced digital acceleration during the pandemic, and escalated their attacks to such levels it feels appropriate to paraphrase the title of Michelle Yeoh’s hit new movie and point out we are being attacked by everything, everywhere, all at once.

The relentless threat environment by unseen attackers is felt directly by our defenders whose neurology adapts to an unhealthy ‘hypervigilance’.

With cyber security professionals our cyber defenders and protectors, Cybermindz is peer-informed (like helping like) and will operate at scale to transform the human face of cybersecurity.

Using an evidence based, military-grade protocol called Integrative Restoration or iRest, Cybermindz builds and restores cognitive and emotional resilience in our embattled cyber teams and related disciplines.

The protocol has been used by the US Military since 2006 for veterans from Iraq and Afghanistan and in 2010 was approved by the US Army Surgeon General as a Tier 1 complementary therapy.

The formation of was in part a result of international studies such as the pre-pandemic 2020 UK / US Nominet study which showed:

  • 88% of CISOs considered themselves to be under moderate or high stress
  • 74% said their teams were under moderate or tremendous stress
  • 48% admitted the levels of stress they are under had impacted their mental health and 35% their physical health
  • 40% said that their stress levels had affected their relationships with their family or children

Source: The CISO Stress Report: Life Inside the Perimeter, One Year On

The concern is that cyber teams under relentless pressure may suffer psychological overload which will impede not only their personal wellbeing but also, through no fault of their own, their job performance. By extension this may expose to great risk the organisations they are charged to protect.

Our core proposition is that effective cybersecurity depends on healthy, happy, unburdened cyber minds. Our goal is to ‘protect our protectors’ by building resilience at the psychological level and, by extension, improving the cyber resilience of organisations and society at large.

Genesis of founder, Peter Coroneos, having trained in, practiced and then trialled the iRest protocol with pilot groups within cybersecurity, realised its great potential in alleviating the suffering of stressed cyber teams. The pandemic amplified pressures on cyber defenders, but also provided Peter with the opportunity to successfully test and deliver the protocol remotely.

Recognising its ability to scale, he sought the endorsement of the US based Integrative Restoration Institute (IRI) and its founder, clinical psychologist Dr Richard Miller, to support his efforts to spearhead delivery of the protocol into the cyber sector – noting IRI facilitators had delivered the protocol into the US Military since 2006. Drawing from a pool of over 400 iRest accredited teachers in Australia, has the ability to provide in-person or remote delivery to individuals and teams to preventatively support and restore their mental health. IRI has also authorised us to develop, with their guidance, customised versions for cyber audiences.

The protocol has been the subject of over 25 independent studies which have proven its efficacy in disparate groups, from veterans and active service military, to victims of domestic and substance abuse, homeless shelters, palliative care settings, front line health workers, educationists and college students. The neuroscience suggests that the regular practice of iRest can reverse the effects of prior unmanaged stress and restore individuals’ emotional and cognitive reserves, bringing about a new default state of calm, clarity, empathy and wellbeing.

Peter Coroneos, having trained with and tested the iRest protocol in a pilot program of cyber professionals, realised its great potential to alleviate the suffering of stressed cyber teams.

Mr Coroneos said “The Cybermindz scheme directly addresses the risk of burnout and skills loss. It also fulfils our moral and ethical obligations to those we invite into our profession, to not let them fall.”

“With the criticality of mental health and its ultimate impacts on human suffering and organisational security,’s mission — moving well beyond awareness raising — is to deliver peer-informed, effective, accessible relief and resilience building to stressed and embattled cyber teams.”

Australian Leadership Team

Lt. Col. Richard Mogg, GAICD has joined the Cybermindz board as incoming Executive Director. He will assist Peter Coroneos in building the organisation into a national presence during 2022.

Richard is reaching the peak of his 30 year career in the Australian Army (currently Chief of Staff) as he enters his next phase — working with Cybermindz, the board and facilitators to build mental resilience, renewed purpose, cohesion and happiness in cyber teams, and beyond. Richard is an accomplished Integrative Restoration (iRest) practitioner and teacher and introduced the iRest protocol to the Australian military in 2016.

The board of also includes iRest Australasian Director Fuyuko Toyota and leading cyber organisational and behavioural risk academic, Andrew Reeves. Corrs Chambers Westgarth cyber litigation and pro bono partner Michael do Rozario is supporting the organisation as its Special Advisor: Governance, Risk and Compliance. officially launches on Thursday, June 16 at 5pm at Corrs Chambers Westgarth in Sydney.