MORRISON IGNORES INDUSTRY CALLS FOR DEDICATED CYBER PORTFOLIO

18 December 2020

SENATOR KRISTINA KENEALLY
DEPUTY LABOR LEADER IN THE SENATE
SHADOW MINISTER FOR HOME AFFAIRS
SHADOW MINISTER FOR IMMIGRATION AND CITIZENSHIP
SENATOR FOR NEW SOUTH WALES
 
TIM WATTS MP
SHADOW ASSISTANT MINISTER FOR COMMUNICATIONS
SHADOW ASSISTANT MINISTER FOR CYBER SECURITY
MEMBER FOR GELLIBRAND
 

MORRISON IGNORES INDUSTRY CALLS FOR DEDICATED CYBER PORTFOLIO


Scott Morrison never misses a cyber security photo opportunity, but today he has again failed to be there for the follow up.

Despite media reports touting that Scott Morrison would create a cyber security cabinet position, responsibility for cyber security remains buried at the bottom of Peter Dutton’s over-flowing in tray.  


Microsoft, Telstra, PwC, and the Australian Industry Group have all called for the creation of a dedicated cyber security portfolio to provide the leadership needed to build Australia’s cyber resilience both inside government and out. 


Today is another missed opportunity for Scott Morrison to do more than simply hold press conferences on cyber security.


It’s now clear that cyber security will remain politically orphaned under the Morrison Government.


This is particularly concerning given the ever-growing threat of cyber-attacks, which continue to increase in volume, frequency, and sophistication with the potential to significantly disrupt people’s lives and Australia’s economy.


In the absence of a dedicated cyber security portfolio, it’s time Peter Dutton started to do his job. He should immediately prioritise:

  1. CREATING AUSTRALIAN CYBER JOBS – Develop a dedicated strategy to grow Australia’s domestic cyber industry and create much needed jobs in the industry, which was noticeably absent from the 2020 Cyber Security Strategy;
  2. FIXING FAILED COMMONWEALTH CYBER SECURITY REGIME – Accept bi-partisan recommendations from the Joint Committee of Public Accounts and Audit to protect government departments through an annual cyber resilience audit;
  3. CRACKDOWN ON CYBER CRIMINALS – Make the cost of doing business for criminal syndicates using ransomware attacks to target Australian businesses too great, breaking the business model of these groups through international cooperative law enforcement and intelligence actions.
  4. SUPPORTING SMEs – Back Labor’s calls to expand active cyber defence efforts to cover small and medium business (SMEs) which are increasingly falling victim to cyber-attacks resulting in business closures and job losses;
  5. PROTECTING OUR DEMOCRACY – Ensure the security of non-government democratic institutions such as MPs, political parties, think tanks, and NGOs that are vulnerable to cyber enabled foreign interference and espionage but don’t currently have the protection of government security agencies