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NSW Unveils New Sector-wide Cybersecurity Strategy

The NSW Government has launched a sector-wide cybersecurity strategy that brings industry development and government resiliency together. The strategy focuses on four key commitments including increasing NSW Government cyber resiliency, helping NSW cybersecurity businesses grow, enhancing the industry workforce and its skills and supporting research and innovation.

The new strategy will replace the existing NSW Cyber Security Strategy and the NSW Cyber Industry Development Strategy, combining both into one overarching cybersecurity strategy. The Minister for Digital and Minister for Customer Service said, “To realise our collective vision of becoming the cyber capital of the Southern Hemisphere, we need government and industry working together — that’s what this strategy seeks to achieve.”

Last year, NSW committed $240 million to bolster internal cyber capacity, established a regional Cyber Security Hub in Bathurst, led the work of an industry standards taskforce and introduced SME targets for ICT expenditure across government, the Minister said.

Under this strategy, Investment NSW will establish an NSW Cyber Hub, said Minister for Jobs, Investment, Tourism and Western Sydney. 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, he said.

“The export opportunities for [the] cybersecurity industry [are] enormous. From Bondi to Broken Hill, cybersecurity businesses can export to any location around the world from any city or town in NSW,” the Minister for Jobs, Investment, Tourism and Western Sydney said.

The strategy is designed to ensure the government continues to provide secure, trusted and resilient services in an ever-changing and developing environment while supporting the growth of an innovative NSW cyber industry to cement NSW as the leading state for cybersecurity in the Asia-Pacific region.

To achieve its vision of being a world leader in cybersecurity, the government will consider four principles: lead by example in best practice and cyber resilience; be progressive and proactive to allow the cyber workforce to expand; seek opportunities to grow cyber industry commercialisation; and provide practical support to reduce barriers to business growth.

Federal government pushing to boost national cybersecurity

OpenGov Asia recently reported that the federal government will establish three ‘cyber hub’ pilots in some of Canberra’s largest IT shops to provide cybersecurity services to agencies with fewer resources.

The Australian Employment Minister revealed the step-change in government cyber policy during his keynote to the Australian Financial Review Government Summit on Wednesday, 28 April 2021.

He said the hubs will allow “leading agencies such as Defence, Home Affairs and Services Australia” to provide services to agencies without the “breadth and depth of skills. In some cases, we know that certain agencies cannot compete for skills and resources in the marketplace and we must develop alternative ways for meeting their needs.”

The Minister, who retained oversight of digital policy in a machinery of government change earlier this month, also suggested that such a model could extend to other IT services in the future. Any further shift towards a hub-based model would be “informed by the whole-of-government architecture and the digital review”, the Minister noted.

The Digital Transformation Agency is currently developing the architecture, which will “map out all the strategic capabilities” required by the government, after a slow start last year. It is happening alongside a digital review of agency capabilities looking at “what level of skills exist, at what levels of maturity and how differently agencies are currently performing”.

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