Defence Minister Linda Reynolds and Minister for Home Affairs Peter Dutton have announced further boosting for Australia’s cyber defence and resilience capabilities to make the nation’s essential networks even more secure and reliable.
This investment is a key part of the Morrison government’s commitment to cyber security, following the release of the 2020 Cyber Security Strategy and the Cyber Enhanced Situational Awareness and Response (CESAR) package announced on 30 June.
Minister for Defence Linda Reynolds said the investment announced includes measures to strengthen the resilience of Australian critical infrastructure, businesses and individuals against cyber threats.
"The Morrison government’s record investment in cyber security of $1.67 billion over 10 years includes the $1.35 billion CESAR package. This package ensures we can identify more cyber threats, disrupt more cyber criminals offshore, build more partnerships with industry and government and protect more Australians," Minister Reynolds said.
The Cyber Security Strategy highlighted $598.4 million for a range of new initiatives that will be delivered through the CESAR package, including:
- Over $66 million to assist Australia’s major critical infrastructure providers assess their networks for vulnerabilities and enhance their cyber security posture, ensuring the nation’s essential networks are more secure and reliable;
- Over $10 million for an expanded National Exercise Program that will work with federal, state and territory government agencies and private sector organisations to test their readiness and resilience to significant cyber security incidents;
- Over $67 million to transform the Joint Cyber Security Centres, established under the 2016 Strategy, into collaboration platforms for developing new and innovative solutions to combat cyber threats, boosting our cyber security co-ordination with state governments, industry partners and academia across the country;
- Over $58 million to enhance customer engagement channels and the successful ReportCyber incident reporting portal, including the provision of additional online resources, and practical, tailored advice and awareness raising for all Australians;
- Over $12 million to extend a dedicated 24/7 help desk that will provide cyber security advice, and technical assistance for older Australians, families and small businesses; and
- Over $385 million for intelligence capabilities and program administration.
Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton said the CESAR package underpins the 2020 Cyber Security Strategy, and the Coalition government’s response to the rapidly evolving changes across the cyber threat landscape.
"We will continue strengthening our cyber security posture to enhance the collaboration and threat sharing channels between government and industry to ensure we are all working towards a safer online environment," he said.
"The Morrison government is committed to safeguarding the benefits of the internet and the digital economy for our nation, ensuring all Australians have the skills and the ability to protect their families and their businesses."