Cybersecurity has been brought to the forefront of the federal election, with the Liberals pledging $156 million to build a cyber workforce and protect Australian’s from the risk of cyber-attacks.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison has pledged to invest $156 million in Australia’s cybersecurity capabilities if the Liberals win the upcoming federal election.
Of this investment, $50 million will be used to hire more staff under a workforce expansion program, $40 million will be used to set up a countering foreign cyber criminals capacity within the Australia Cyber Security Centre (ACSC), $40 million will be used to hire more military cyber specialists in the Australian Defence Force over four years, and $26 million will be used to expand the ACSCs assistance to the community.
The workforce expansion program will include money for new scholarships for vocational, undergraduate and postgraduate education in the field of cybersecurity. Money will also go to Questacon, a Canberra-based science and technology centre, to train 1,000 primary school teachers to increase student interest in science, technology, engineering and maths.
The investment pledge comes after the Australian Cyber Security Growth Network found a shortfall in Australia’s cybersecurity workforce may already be costing the country more than $400 million in lost revenue and wages.
A version of this article first appeared on smh.com.au.