CEO of AustCyber Michelle Price has called for greater innovation in Australia’s cyber security capabilities as the sector’s revenue soars to nearly $4 billion.
Cyber security continues to be one of the most rapidly expanding sectors worldwide. Global spending on cyber security products and services is projected to increase by 88 per cent over the next eight years, from around US$145 billion today to almost US$270 billion in 2026.
In 2018, Australia’s external spending on cyber security products and services grew by 8 per cent to $3.9 billion (compared with 6 per cent growth in 2017).
While Australia’s cyber security sector is still developing, there is emerging evidence the sector can capture a significant share of the growing global cyber security market.
Price said, "The aim of the Cyber Security Sector Competitiveness Plan is to provide the economic evidence base for the cyber security industry across business, research and consumer segments to drive growth in the ecosystem, increase exports of Australian solutions, and support Australia to become the leading global centre for cyber security education."
With the second-highest ‘cyber maturity’ in the Indo-Pacific region and strengths in core skill areas such as quantum computation, wireless technology and high-value niche hardware, Australia is the ideal growth environment for cyber security businesses.
The 2019 update was authored by AustCyber – the Australian Cyber Security Growth Network, part of the Australian government’s Industry Growth Centres Initiative – which also released the original plan in 2017 and an update last year.
"The 2019 update indicates strong growth against the data outlined in the first iteration, released in April 2017, reflecting the rapid evolution of this dynamic sector," Price explained.
The plan draws on extensive industry consultation and research to provide an updated picture of the global outlook, challenges, opportunities and priority actions needed to grow a vibrant and globally competitive cyber security sector that enhances Australia’s future economic growth.
Last year’s update provided a ‘deep dive’ on the skills and workforce gap – one of three key issues holding back the sector’s growth. This year’s deep dive explores the underlying structural challenges of having an inadequate measurement of the sector’s development, and its impact and contribution to economic prosperity.
"A clear view of the maturity and size of Australia’s cyber security sector is essential for strategic growth. Good policy and future investments are contingent upon policymakers, entrepreneurs and investors having a strong picture of the sector on which to make informed decisions," Price added.
Cyber security as a business activity, as well as an economic pursuit, cuts across all industries. It includes providers of cyber security capability, which comprise the cyber security sector, and organisations in other sectors that employ cyber security specialists.
Furthermore, cyber security products and services assist to protect and enable infrastructure, supply chains and value chains of the digital aspects of the global economy, however the benefits of cyber security have not been studied to the extent necessary.
The Australian Cyber Security Industry Roadmap continues to be a companion document to the Sector Competitiveness Plan to enable growth opportunities for Australia.
The roadmap brings together the expertise and networks of CSIRO Futures, Data61 and AustCyber to identify a common vision and map out the road to success in the cyber security sector and the application of cyber resilience across other growth sectors as case studies for the economy.
World-class scientific and technological expertise is applied to steer business, government and society through the challenges we must navigate over the medium to long term, to seize opportunities across all Australian industries.
This year, a second companion document has been released – CISO Lens Benchmark 2019. CISO Lens is a forum for chief information security officers (CISOs) of large Australian and New Zealand organisations.
This report aims to enable evidence-based decision making around strategy and resource allocation and is founded on benchmarking completed by CISO Lens founder James Turner with cyber security executives to assess how their organisations respond to cyber risks.