Australia's Crime Stoppers partners Kaspersky Lab for online safety

The Russian cybersecurity firm has formed a new online cyber safety partnership with Crime Stoppers that aims to teach Australians how to be safe from online crime.
Written by Asha Barbaschow, Contributor on

Kaspersky Lab has announced partnering with Australia's criminal information reporting service Crime Stoppers that will see the Russian firm provide online "cyber safety" education to the public.

Such education will be delivered via safety videos staring Eugene Kaspersky, and forums comprising tips and the latest cybersecurity-related information, which Kaspersky Lab said will allow people to be safe online.

Crime Stoppers gathers information supplied by the community to assist police agencies with solving and preventing crime.

"In the last two years we've seen an increase in cybercrime and victim reporting from the general public," Crime Stoppers director Peter Price said in a statement.

"In New South Wales alone, 30 percent of all Crime Stoppers reports received are now online."

The partnership will also see a public relations social media campaign and digital activities rolled out later this year, as well as four "key cybersecurity events" in the pipeline.

"More than 50 percent of our Facebook followers are females. As they are protectors of their nest, we will also implement content to further reach out to mothers to keep their children safe with connected devices," Price added.

Calling cybercrime the new frontier, Price said it is important to partner on cybersecurity, given 90 percent of cybercrime occurs outside of Australia.

"Hence the importance for us to get on the front foot and do as much prevention education as possible," he continued. "What better way than to collaborate with a business whose very nature in itself is stopping crime. We feel that Kasperksy Lab can have an impact in keeping Australians safe."

In a submission [PDF] made to an inquiry into Australia's trade system and the digital economy, Kasperky Lab said third-party trust is a fundamental requirement for any large-scale implementation of network security.

"'Localising' or 'regionalising' cybersecurity regulation does little to help Australian enterprises to gain a share of the global $93 billion information security market projected for 2018 by Gartner or the growing $22 billion market of industrial cybersecurity," the company wrote.

"We strongly believe that cybersecurity industry needs to address the question of trust with more robust criteria than the geographic location of company's headquarters -- be it Melbourne or Moscow."

Kaspersky Lab has repeatedly claimed no ties to the Russian government, and in an effort to demonstrate that the company can be trusted in wake of alleged involvement in data theft, Kaspersky Lab has laid out plans for transparency initiatives including external audits, source code reviews, and bug bounties.

The initiatives have stemmed from reports linking the use of Kaspersky software with the theft of NSA hacking tools, and followed the United States government in September banning all federal agencies from using Kaspersky software over concerns about the Russian-based company's ties to the Kremlin.

While Homeland Security has banned its software from being used, the Kaspersky Lab chief said he isn't particularly concerned because his company's products weren't extensively used by US government in the first place.

The Australian government last month joined its US and UK allies in attributing the NotPetya malware attack to Russia.

Speaking with ZDNet on Wednesday, Minister for Law Enforcement and Cyber Security Angus Taylor said attribution is important, and a major statement that has to be made.

"You're saying to that country, you're calling out bad behaviour and these things can always escalate -- making them accountable," he said.

"Holding criminals and hostile governments to account ... diplomats have to manage those issues very carefully because these things can escalate, but I am adamant we should attribute."


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