​Public-private cybersecurity centre open for business in Sydney

The fourth of five Joint Cyber Security Centres has officially opened in Sydney, a year after the first was unveiled in Brisbane.

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(Image: CERT)

The Australian government has officially opened the Sydney Joint Cyber Security Centre (JCSC), the fourth of five centres in the country's capital cities that are funded under a AU$47 million program.

Speaking at the new JCSC on Sussex Street in Sydney, Minister for Law Enforcement and Cyber Security Angus Taylor said the centre is a critical hub for business and government to improve cybersecurity practices and share information.

"Cybersecurity threats are always evolving, so we need to ensure we have a range of strategies in place to protect our digital borders and get on the offensive against cyber attacks," Taylor said.

The five JCSCs are aimed at boosting cybersecurity resilience in the country by bringing industry, government, and law enforcement together to share relevant threat information under the one roof.

Led by CERT Australia -- which falls under the remit of the Attorney-General's Department -- the objectives of the JCSCs include sharing sensitive information, including actionable cyber threat intelligence; developing solutions to cybersecurity risks and issues through collaboration and without commercial bias; determining a common understanding of the cybersecurity environment; and providing organisations with access to practical tools and resources to improve their cybersecurity.

The first JCSC opened in Brisbane in February 2017, which was originally slated to open late 2016. The Brisbane centre includes representatives from Australian and Queensland government agencies, law enforcement, and critical infrastructure owners and operators.

The Sydney JCSC was actually opened in December alongside the Perth centre, which is located on William Street in the city's CBD.

CERT reports the Perth JCSC has engaged with oil and gas, mining, academia, state government, and other major industry groups since launch.

The Melbourne centre, located on Bourke Street, has been active since October 2017; and the Adelaide centre's staff are currently working in a temporary location until a permanent home is found for the South Australian JCSC.

The multimillion-dollar cybersecurity centre program was designed in partnership with industry and forms part of Australia's Cyber Security Strategy.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull launched the country's cybersecurity strategy in April 2016, which is aimed at defending the nation's cyber networks from organised criminals and state-sponsored attackers, and sits alongside the AU$400 million provided in the Defence White Paper for cyber activities.

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