Australia Labor Party wants a dedicated cybersecurity minister: Would it help?

As the Russian invasion of Ukraine reverberates online, Labor’s “better and smarter” cybersecurity ideas will face a complex cybersecurity reality to better protect Australian businesses.

australia military shutterstock 1519594076
Bumble Dee/Shutterstock

An election win for Australia’s Labor Party opposition could see cybersecurity elevated to become a front-bench ministerial role, opposition leader Anthony Albanese has said as he lays out plans for the complex cybersecurity climate he will inherit if—as polls now suggest is likely—his party finally unseats the government of incumbent prime minister Scott Morrison.

“Australia has already been the target of state-sponsored cyberattacks, aimed at political parties, government departments, universities, and corporations,” Albanese said during a speech at think tank Lowy Institute, where he outlined his strategy for national security in an era of global upheaval and a vicious war that is actively challenging the world order.

Given a long history of working with the government on a bipartisan basis to support initiatives such as new national-security legislation and the controversial AUKUS multinational deal, Albanese proclaimed that “national security is above politics”—and then went on to call out deficiencies in the Morrison government’s approach to cybersecurity.

Recognising the importance of cybersecurity and data protection to Australia’s economy and national security, in 2019 Albanese created a role of Shadow Assistant Minister for Communications and Cyber Security, currently held by Gellibrand MP Tim Watts.

The election of an Albanese-led government would elevate the cybersecurity ministry to Labor’s front bench, giving the area a strategic independence that would stand in stark contrast to the approach of Morrison, who has managed cybersecurity responsibilities as one of many responsibilities for ministers covering defence and related issues.

To continue reading this article register now

22 cybersecurity myths organizations need to stop believing in 2022