Australian partners are well placed to capitalise on the Government’s new cyber security strategy, using its release as a launchpad to deepen protection conversations across the industry.
As reported by ARN, Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull, launched the new strategy at the Australian Technology Park in Sydney last week, with the overriding aim of addressing the dual challenges of the digital age - advancing and protecting Australian interests online.
Following the launch, which has been universally backed by the local IT industry, Webroot Managing Director, Robbie Upcroft told ARN that the strategy can help trigger a “security focused conversation” for channel partners in Australia, as businesses seek trusted advisors to help map out mission critical strategies.
“We are optimistic that the announcement will deepen the cybersecurity conversation in Australia and encourage businesses and consumers alike to seek out the latest cyber-security protection,” Upcroft told ARN.
As part of the launch, the Government will also invest more than $230 million over four years to enhance Australia’s cybersecurity capability and deliver new initiatives, a move backed by Upcroft.
“We know that cyber-attacks can be devastating for business; research has shown that Australian SMBs predict a cyber-attack in 2016 could cost them an average of $400,000,” he added.
“The $230 million investment is a positive move in the right direction - focusing much needed resource and expertise on cyber-threat intelligence and helping to take business security defences to the next level.”
As the local head of a real-time threat detection vendor, Upcroft said nearly half (45 percent) of Australian SMBs do not feel confident in current endpoint protection capabilities, according to Webroot’s SMB Threat Report 2015.
“We therefore see this announcement as a great opportunity to remind businesses and consumers that next generation threat intelligence and security protection solutions are available now - and will only continue to evolve and strengthen, particularly given this renewed national focus,” he added.
Given the emphasis on information sharing between business and government - with relevant investments in joint public-private threat intelligence sharing centres in capital cities and the industry-led Cyber security Growth Centre - Upcroft said partners can draw on the additional information, ideas and collaboration that arise from these initiatives to raise awareness.
“We recommend partners schedule security check-ins with their customers to better understand how to protect themselves against advanced threats,” he advised.
“With this strategy announcement generating widespread coverage and awareness of cyber-security, it’s a great time to have that discussion with your customer.”
On the whole, Upcroft said Webroot is “strongly encouraged” by the Government’s cybersecurity strategy, commending an initiative that is going to benefit the entire nation.
“We are particularly encouraged by the scope of the announcement and believe it adequately covers key areas such as threat education and the vital role of public-private partnership,” he added.
“The announcement of the children's eSafety commissioner, Alastair MacGibbon, as the new special cyber security advisor to the Prime Minister is a really positive strategic move.”
But to have even more impact, Upcroft said more focus on SMB market is required, a market that represents 95 percent of all businesses in Australia.
“Given the rapidly changing volume and nature of cyber threats impacting this sector, we know that cyber-attacks often lead to outages in SMBs and hurt them far more than larger organisations,” he added.
“We would strongly welcome specific action in the cyber-security landscape to better support SMBs.”