It's been almost two years since the Australian government launched its cyber-security strategy for the nation. Unlike many documents coming from Canberra, this one came with funding so the proposed initiatives in the strategy had some chance of actually happening. Today, another part of that strategy came to fruition with Sydney joining Brisbane, Perth and Melbourne with its own Joint Cyber Security Centre.
The Joint Cyber Security Centre (JCSC) is a place where public and private sector parties can come together to work on solving some of the big infosec challenges facing our country, both at government and business levels. The JCSCs are important because they are an open environment. In the past, it was difficult for private sector organisations to work with federal law enforcement and other agencies because security clearances were often needed just to enter buildings.
Minister for Law Enforcement and Cyber Security Angus Taylor said, “This is an important step to enhance Australia’s defensive cyber capabilities. The JCSC is a critical hub for business and government to improve their cyber security practices and share information in a trusted environment. We have already run a number of cyber security exercises across these centres, particularly in the lead up to the Commonwealth Games".
The centres allow organisations to share information regarding threats and defensive measures and to share resources. In a way, this is a more formal arrangement that mimics what is happening with threat actors. They have established online spaces where they can freely trade information and tools. The result is a far more dangerous threat landscape has been created through the cooperation.
It makes sense to share information in response to this more perilous world.
The Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT) Australia, part of the Australian Cyber Security Centre (ACSC), is leading the JCSC initiative.