Australian census outages should not deter progress on digitisation of government, according to the nation’s peak member body for the ICT industry.
As reported by sister publication Computerworld Australia, confusion still remains as to whether the 2016 Census website was brought offline by four distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks, as previously claimed by Australian Bureau of Statistics head statistician, David Kalisch.
Irrespective of the reason however, the AIIA said that outages preventing people from completing the census on the allocated night should not act as a barrier for innovation within government.
“We must make the move towards a digitally-driven economy in order to be globally competitive and our government should be an exemplar of this digital transformation,” AIIA CEO, Rob Fitzpatrick, said.
“Done well, significant savings can be made in time, convenience and efficiency for both the government and our citizens.”
Fitzpatrick acknowledged it was “unfortunate” that the census was the subject of a “massive denial of service attack”, which effectively sabotaged the census.
“As the world transforms to be more digital, cyber security will be a major challenge for all governments and businesses,” he added.
“The Australian government should be commended for having already prioritised cyber security through its recent policy development and appointments and the AIIA is committed to working with the government on this issue.”
Fitzpatrick said the world’s “most successful and innovative businesses learn from their setbacks” and iterate and improve in future releases.
“We should expect the same from our government,” he claimed.
“Rather than calls to revert to the old way of doing something, such as going back to paper, we should be supporting our government to take stock, learn, make improvements, plug gaps, and do it better next time.”
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