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As one of Australia’s leading utility companies, Jemena owns and operates a diverse collection of energy and water transportation assets across the nation. The company delivers gas, electricity and water services to millions of domestic and business customers via pipelines and networks valued at more than $10.5 billion… Read on

The Office of the Australian Information Commissioner’s latest quarterly Notifiable Data Breach report highlights the urgent need for organisations to take a more proactive approach to security, experts have warned.

The report, released last week, shows that 242 data breaches were disclosed in the first full quarter of the scheme’s operation. Around 59% of these involved malicious attacks, and around half of such attacks were the result of compromised credentials… Read on

In the first full quarter since Australia’s mandatory breach disclosure scheme came into effect, healthcare providers reported the most data breaches amid controversy over the national health record system.

A total of 242 serious data breaches were disclosed to the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (OAIC) during the second quarter of 2018 – the first full quarter since the national mandatory disclosure scheme came into effect… Read on

TechSci Research estimates the Australian managed security services (MSS) market will grow at a CAGR of more than 15 percent from 2018-23 as a result of the increased uptake of cloud computing and the popularity of bring-your-own-device (BYOD).

That’s a decent growth rate, enough to pique the interest of managed IT services providers looking to grow their business.

They already have established client relationships and those clients, like all businesses, face constant challenges keeping secure in the face of an every evolving threat landscape and a shortage of cyber skills… Read On

More than a third of reported Australian data breaches are due to human error, the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (OAIC) has revealed as it released its first full-quarter statistical report about the functioning of the new Notifiable Data Breaches (NDB) scheme.

There were 242 notifications of eligible data breaches during the last quarter of fiscal 2018, according to the new report.

That represents an average of just under 81 breaches per month – a significant increase on the 55 incidents recorded in March, the first full month of NDB reporting… Read On

The latest data breach report from the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner indicates that organisations which do not use multi-factor authentication for customers, employees and sysadmins are not using a relatively simple method of minimising risk, an IT security industry professional claims.

Mark Perry, the chief technology officer for the APAC at Ping Identity, said he advocated the use of preventive technology right through a company’s IT architecture… Read On

On 23 December 2015, inside a Prykarpattyaoblenergo energy control centre in Ukraine, a world-first occurred.

A more-than-likely Russian malware attack gained access to the utilities’ network and manually switched off 30 substations leaving 230,000 Ukrainians without power.

Power was restored relatively quickly – between one and six hours depending on the region… Read On

Smarter energy grids are more complex and require more comprehensive cybersecurity plans.

According to Phil Kernick, chief technology officer at security firm CQR Consulting, the automatic management of both supply and demand technology is lacking in security.

Cybersecurity was a key discussion topic at a roundtable with focus on energy and other utilities, recently held in Sydney.

“The distribution systems and the generation systems were deployed a decade and a half ago and are not scheduled for change for another decade and a half,” said Kernick… Read On

Experts in cyber security are concerned that a lack of security in smaller companies and start-ups creates room for attacks.

The concern comes from IT industry experts that are pushing for companies to pay more attention to securing their infrastructure.

Giovanni Polizzi, energy solutions manager at technology company Indra, said new companies were using insufficient security systems… Read On

A side effect of the increasing complexity within the core infrastructures of Australia’s electricity and water utilities may make them more susceptible to cyber attacks, experts have warned.

In the case of the electricity grid, complexity is being created by the growing number of small producers feeding power into the grid. The output from wind farms and solar arrays must be carefully monitored and controlled to ensure that they do not have a detrimental impact on stability; however, this control may well be the subject of cyber attacks… Read on

With regulators unwilling to accept security investments that would lead to higher tariffs, there is a chance that Australia’s National Energy Market could face increased cyber risks

Australia’s electricity companies are caught in a cyber security catch-22 situation.

Although power suppliers are relying more on household rooftop solar panels connected to their information systems over the internet, they are constrained in how much they can charge consumers, making it harder to raise prices to pay for improved security… Read On

The future of smart energy grids, with automatic management of both supply and demand, is “looking really interesting”, says Phil Kernick, chief technology officer at security firm CQR Consulting. But the current state of the technology and its security is a problem.

“The distribution systems and the generation systems were deployed a decade and a half ago, and are not scheduled for change for another decade and a half,” Kernick told journalists at a roundtable on the cybersecurity of energy and other utilities in Sydney on Tuesday… Read On

The risk of cyber-attacks is a growing problem, as monitoring and control of core Australian infrastructures becomes more complex.

With Australia’s utility operators more susceptible to cyber-attacks than ever, there could be widespread disruption across the nation.

On Tuesday the 24th of July, in Sydney, a panel of experts talked about how companies can manage the risk of cyber-attacks… Read On

Increasing complexity within the monitoring and control core infrastructures of Australia’s utility operators may make them more susceptible to cyber attacks that could cause widespread disruption across the country, according to a warning from industry experts.

Speaking during an industry round-table discussion in Sydney on cybersecurity in the utilities sector, Ivan Fernandez, industry director at analyst firm Frost & Sullivan, said that for electricity generators and distributors, complexity is being created by the growing number of small producers feeding power into the grid… Read On

The proliferation of internet-of-things devices being connected into the power grid is raising the risks of a cyber attack that could cause widespread blackouts just as political pressure to reduce power prices is making it impossible for network owners to spend what they should be on security, according to experts.

Increased use of solar panels, batteries, other grid-connected devices, and demand response platforms are all increasing the complexity of the power system and could make the grid more susceptible to a disruptive attack through their control systems… Read On

From personal privacy to online scams, it seems almost every IT security-related issue now has its very own awareness week. Incorporating everything from television ads to banners on buses, the campaigns are designed to push messages directly at consumers.

However, while such weeks might go some way to lifting security awareness, they don’t go far enough. Simply reminding someone of the issues once a year – while a good thing – is really only the start… Read on

From personal privacy to online scams, it seems almost every IT security-related issue now has its very own awareness week. Incorporating everything from television ads to banners on buses, the campaigns are designed to push messages directly at consumers.

However, while such weeks might go some way to lifting security awareness, they don’t go far enough. Simply reminding someone of the issues once a year – while a good thing – is really only the start… Read on

Will open banking wither and die quick smart? Phil Kernick argues the case…

It’s a hot topic across the financial services sector, but the jury is still out on just how much value open banking will deliver to Australia. Low awareness among consumers and challenges around compliance could see the concept wither and die before it’s had a chance to bloom… Read on

It’s currently a hot topic across the financial services sector, but the jury is still out on just how much value open banking will deliver to Australia. Low awareness among consumers and challenges around compliance could see the concept wither and die before it’s had a chance to bloom… Read on

Australian organisations should be looking at their ICT security as part of their planning process for the new financial year – and making sure they have adequate ICT security measures in place for networks, data and devices for the next 12 months and beyond.

Adelaide-based cybersecurity consultancy firm CQR has provided a quick checklist to help businesses sort their security… Read on

Australian organisations should be looking at their ICT security as part of their planning process for the new financial year – and making sure they have adequate ICT security measures in place for networks, data and devices for the next 12 months and beyond.

Adelaide-based cybersecurity consultancy firm CQR has provided a quick checklist to help businesses sort their security… Read on

A fire took out the Warnambool telephone exchange in the Australian state of Victoria in 2012, leaving 100,000 locals without connection for three weeks and reportedly costing A$950,000 a day. A cyber attack could have a similarly profound impact… Read on

The federal government has committed $2.4 billion for technology projects in its latest Budget, including upgrading Australia’s research and supercomputing infrastructure.

Around $1.9 billion of the total investment will go towards upgrading Australia’s national research infrastructure over the next 12 years… Read on

Technology firms have welcomed the Coalition Government’s Budget measures in the field of cyber security, but say that more clarity on the use of different technologies would have been better. Some have sought government aid to make the networks of small businesses secure… Read on

With almost daily reports of cyberattacks, intrusions and data breaches, many organisations are unclear what approach to take to ensure their own security. Some view the challenge as an issue for the IT department while others look to senior management and the board for answers.

The confusion that exists around who is responsible stems from the fact that many organisations have a somewhat historic view of how risk should be managed – one formulated in an era before information technology became ingrained in daily business life. The game has now changed but, in many cases, business thinking has not… Read on

Australian individuals have a new way to transfer money between each other. However, as well as offering clear benefits, the system is also raising some major privacy concerns.

Launched in February, the New Payments Platform (NPP) allows people to transfer funds from their bank account to the account of another person almost instantly… Read on

A year after Australia’s long-fermenting notifiable data breaches (NDB) legislation received royal assent, the new code has today taken effect – hastening in a new era of disclosure obligations that could, depending on whom you talk to, be a major step towards cybersecurity transparency or a damp squib due to purposely vague legislation… Read on

Australia’s data breach law, which takes effect on 22 February, will be among the weakest in the world and is unlikely to impose any pressure on businesses to change the way they protect personal data at the moment, the founder and chief technology officer of a cyber security consulting firm claims… Read on

The forthcoming EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is set to become one of the biggest data privacy reforms to disrupt the northern hemisphere’s digital marketing sector in the industry’s history… Read on

As cyber security becomes an increasingly important issue for Australian organisations, many are finding themselves hamstrung by a lack of qualified staff. Skilled security experts are proving hard to find and the rising salary expectations resulting from this scarcity is putting them out of reach for small and mid-sized firms… Read on

The age of customer centricity is here, and as experience increasingly becomes the biggest driver of digital transformation and marketing strategy, 2018 will be about moving the customer relationship to an even deeper and more dynamic level of personalised engagement… Read on

For an organisation whose entire business revolves around the trafficking of healthcare data, the need for information security is hardly a revelation. But when the Australian Health Service Alliance’s (AHSA’s) previous managed security provider closed shop, the organisation was forced back to market in a move that drove a long-overdue overhaul of its security, recovery, and training processes… Read on

As the number of cyber attacks on organisations around the world continues to increase, many are opting to invest in specialised insurance policies as a means of protection.

The policies vary significantly in scope and cost, but all offer a level of protection should an attack occur. Policyholders hope this will be sufficient to cover the cost of remediation for affected systems as well as lost production or sales… Read on

DevOps is gaining popularity – but there are limitations, writes Phil Kernick, CTO at information security specialist CQR…

The appeal of DevOps is its apparent ability to reduce the time required for the development process. The approach can significantly shorten projects and get new software up and running faster. This differs from the traditional ‘waterfall’ approach which begins with a specification, code methodically developed over time, rigorously tested and then deployed… Read on

When they were first invented as business structures, companies tended to operate as stand-alone entities. Each would carry out all the activities required to create the goods or services provided to their customers.

During the 1980s, this situation started to change. The concept of ‘outsourcing’ became popular and companies began to offload elements of their operations to external parties. The rationale was that they could do it faster, better and more cost effectively while the company itself focused on its core competency… Read on

A rapid rise of internet-connected devices offers huge potential benefits for businesses and consumers, however it’s also sparking increasing concern among IT security experts.

The connected devices that form the Internet of Things (IoT) come in a plethora of form factors and are designed to undertake a range of different tasks. What’s less clear is now secure they might be… Read on

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