The Attorney-General, Robert McLelland announced on Friday the Government will be conducting Australia’s first ever white paper to help educate the community in cyber security.

This is in response to the real and growing threat of cyber-crime which has become the fastest growing crime in the country.

The policy document will be released in early 2012 and will seek to be a comprehensive review of how Governments, businesses and individuals can work together to realise the full benefits of cyberspace while at the same time making sure current and emerging risks can be managed.

The Government’s media release says:

  “The cyber threat to Australia is real, evolving and a growing test to our national security establishment,” Minister for Defence Stephen Smith said.

“It comes from a wide range of sources, and from adversaries possessing a broad range of skills. 

“Cyber attacks are becoming increasingly more sophisticated and targeted. They are no longer confined to random acts of opportunism.”

“Cyberspace is a shared domain and no single nation can address the security challenges alone. Australia, the United States and the United Kingdom are working together to promote a secure, resilient and trusted cyberspace that ensures safe and secure access for all.”

Drawn up by the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet, the paper will also call for public involvement via a discussion paper to be released next month.

Australia and indeed the world Governments have been shocked into taking action after a whole host of documented cyber-attacks have taken place recently, including the Sony PlayStation data breach and the hacking of 10 Government computers.

We know for a fact that high tech crime often results in identity theft, which can cause harm to an individual’s life beyond the initial fraud. The damage fraudsters can do to our credit file is very real. Just from being the victim of one simple piece of credit card fraud we can be left unable to obtain credit for up to 5 years if our credit file has been tarnished.

So we welcome the attempts made to educate and promote safer transactions amongst all sectors of online life in Australia.

The challenge for Governments now may be balancing the freedom of the internet with the security of its users – both of which are paramount.

For more information on the risks of identity theft, and identity theft prevention, visit our website

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