New campaign urges Australians to protect themselves against cybercrime

Joint media release

  • Minister for Home Affairs, the Hon Peter Dutton MP

Australians are being urged to strengthen their cyber defences and be alert to online threats through a new national cyber security campaign.

The new Australian Cyber Security Centre (ACSC) cyber security campaign provides easy-to-follow advice for Australian families, business and organisations on how to protect themselves from cyber threats.

Minister for Defence, Senator the Hon Linda Reynolds CSC today launched the new ACSC campaign which will initially run on social media and digital platforms.

“Cybercriminals are relentless, operating around the clock and around the world, in a bid to steal the data and money from Australian businesses and families,” said Minister Reynolds.

“Australians are reporting more than one cybercrime every 10 minutes, making it more important than ever that we all remain alert to the threat of cybercrime.

“I urge all Australians to go online and visit cyber.gov.au for tips on how to act now and stay secure. Even small steps can make a big difference.”

The Morrison Government’s $1.67 billion investment in the Cyber Security Strategy 2020 compliments the act now and stay secure online national campaign.

Minister for Home Affairs Peter Dutton said having a strategy as a country to deal effectively with online threats is essential to keeping Australians safe from cybercriminals.

“The Strategy ensures our agencies have the powers and capabilities they need to identify and disrupt threats to the safety of Australians – particularly children, the most vulnerable members of our community,” Mr Dutton said.

“The Strategy commits $124.9 million to strengthen law enforcement’s counter cybercrime capabilities, including an investment of $89.9 million to equip the Australian Federal Police with an extra 100 cyber detectives who will identify and target cyber criminals.

“Even with these measures in place, all Australians need to know how to safeguard themselves against cyber security threats. The Strategy includes a range of measures to encourage safe and secure online behaviours.”

The Head of the Australian Cyber Security Centre, Ms Abigail Bradshaw CSC, said the campaign will see continuous and practical cyber security advice provided to all Australians, beginning with ransomware.

“Ransomware is a type of malware that locks up your files until a ransom is paid. Criminals can steal a copy of files to coerce you to pay the ransom by threatening to publicly leak or sell your data,” Ms Bradshaw said.

“New technologies in our pockets, homes and offices are bringing huge benefits, but as soon as these devices connect to the internet they become vulnerable to compromise.”

The cyber security campaign also aims to encourage more Australians to report cyber incidents through the ACSC’s ReportCyber tool, which provides a single online portal for individuals and business to report cyber incidents.

“This Government is committed to doing all we can to keep our nation safe. Australia’s Cyber Security Strategy 2020 represents our nation’s largest ever investment in cyber security and expands the cyber security capabilities and assistance provided through the Australian Signals Directorate and the ACSC.

“But cyber security is a whole of community endeavour and we need all Australians to play a role in combatting malicious cyber activity”

By reporting cybercrime, you are helping the ACSC build a collective threat picture that ultimately helps keep Australians more secure,” Minister Reynolds said.

The ACSC is the trusted authority for cyber security advice and offers support to all Australians.

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