NSW cybersecurity strategy supporting new technology landscape


By Mikayla Fanto

A new cybersecurity strategy was announced yesterday for New South Wales to support a constantly evolving technology-based landscape.

Cybersecurity has become increasingly important to defend and protect the economy with Covid-19 changing the way Australians work, with many people working from home worldwide.

Previously, the government and industry have had two separate strategies, but the strategy released on Thursday combines the two.

NSW Digital Minister Victor Dominello said in an article by Innovation Aus the government plays an important part in leading the state in resilience to cyber-attacks.

“Increasing overall cybersecurity resilience is about ensuring the safety and security of citizens and communities online. Government is absolutely pivotal to this as part of its overall responsibility to protect its citizens,” he said.

“In a post COVID-19 environment, we need to adapt our way of living and working to embrace the digital future.”

NSW Jobs and Investment Minister Stuart Ayres said in an article the state is working with the cyber sector to grow the local industry, leverage academic strengths, and drive international competitiveness.

“Under this strategy, Investment NSW will establish a NSW Cyber Hub, delivering a range of initiatives to accelerate the growth of NSW cyber businesses, maintain and attract the right talent to create the fluid, dynamic workforce needed to address skills gaps,” Mr Ayres said.

“NSW already has an incredible depth of talent however we need to continue to foster, cultivate and grow this pipeline to ensure our industry thrives. This strategy builds on our strengths whilst seeking to grow new ones and will help the NSW digital economy thrive.”

The strategy has been developed over the past year with the purpose of defending and protecting the economy in mind.

The new strategy focuses on four principles including, leading by example in best practice and cyber resilience, which involves exceeding mandatory cybersecurity requirements set through the policy.

Another focus is to be progressive and proactive to allow the cyber workforce to expand, to create opportunities for underrepresented groups in the workforce.

The strategy seeks opportunities to grow cyber industry commercialisation to see a growth in the emerging cybersecurity services and products.

Providing practical support to reduce barriers to business growth is another focus providing the growing industry with tools, connections and opportunities needed to engage an evolving industry.

Many industries are digitising including healthcare which demands an increase in data protection.

According to AustCyber the average number of monthly cyberattacks increased by 33 per cent in the first half of 2020.

Large businesses were reported to have the most attacks at 33 percent with attacks on state government departments and the Australian Parliament in 2019.