The Commonwealth government has signed an agreement to give it greater technological security by participating in Microsoft’s Government Security Program (GSP).
The GSP was launched globally by Microsoft in January. It gives governments controlled access to Windows source codes and other technical information they need to enhance security features of the Windows platform.
Microsoft chief security strategist, Scott Charney, said the GSP built on Microsoft's efforts to continue to provide the best value products and services to meet the needs of the Australian government.
Charney made the announcement as part of his address at the Microsoft-sponsored Australian Defence Symposium held at Parliament House, Canberra, last week.
“Microsoft recognises that in the current global environment, matters ranging from national defence to protection of citizen's personal data, are top-of-mind,” he said. “Governments have a unique and special role and they must place security at the forefront of their information-technology requirements.”
The Australian GSP agreement was signed in conjunction with the Defence Signals Directorate (DSD) which is responsible for providing information security products and services to the government and its defence force.
Australia joins 12 other participants in the GSP including Russia, NATO, China, Taiwan, and the UK with more than 35 other countries currently evaluating the program worldwide.