Future security capabilities to be tested by elite 360° Cyber Game

Future security capabilities to be tested by elite 360° Cyber Game
Future security capabilities to be tested by elite 360° Cyber Game

The Australian National University (ANU) today will host a cyber security game with over 90 influential stakeholders across government, business and academia to help prepare the country for the online challenges of the future.

The 360° Cyber Game will be held by ANU’s National Security College in partnership with RAND Corporation — a non-profit think tank from the US, on Thursday 8 December.

Project coordinator, Michelle Price of the ANU National Security College, told Defence Connect, "The game will be a policy style, desktop exercise that is set in the future.

"It can challenge the underlying assumptions of how people both in the private sector and public sector conceive of cyber security challenges."

The test is deliberately set in the future so "we can work back from those determinations and decide whether or not we need to course correct our existing policy settings to take into account what's coming down the pipeline", Price added.

The line-up for participants include the director of the Defence Intelligence Organisation (DIO), and importantly, "we've got some very senior people involved, but we've also got junior staff involved too", added Price.

"Then it's not just about what the Baby-Boomers think is happening in cyber space, but also what the junior folks are doing themselves in cyber space, either at work or in their personal lives."

From the private sector the game has attracted representatives from organisations such as Google, Microsoft, Telstra and Foxtel.

"Cyber security is not for the IT people, and not just a business risk, it is a business opportunity," said Price. "If your business is not cyber secure — it will not survive over the next 10 to 20 years."

According to Price, Australia is losing up to $17 billion each year through malicious cyber activity. 

"If we don't intervene, we will have lost so many opportunities for our economy to transform. That means we are really limiting the chance for Australia to grow. It really is that serious," Price said.

"We're moving from a resource-based economy to a knowledge-based economy, and if that knowledge isn't protected from a cyber perspective, we will wipe out the great majority of the value we can derive from that knowledge."

Participants in the game, including Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for Cyber Security Dan Tehan and shadow assistant minister for cyber security Gai Brodtmann, will be put through two strategic scenarios based on an anticipated online environment of the year 2022.

According to ANU other participants in the 360° Cyber Game include a mix of cyber experts and policymakers from organisations such as:

  • Federal and state government agencies;
  • Australian Broadcasting Corporation;
  • Australian Securities Exchange;
  • CBR Innovation Network;
  • Omni Executive; and
  • Stone and Chalk.

After the game, the RAND Corporation and ANU will publish a report on the outcomes, which will include recommendations for government and private companies to possibly implement, "and even the 'home organisation'", Price added. 

"RAND and I have deliberately constructed the scenarios that will be worked through in such a way that really does challenge existing thinking, particularly about how the Internet of Things goes bad," Price noted.

"And how intellectual property theft directly relates to national interest, and how that plays out on the global stage."

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