As more cyber attacks are becoming common in today's internet world, business owners are beginning to realise the need for comprehensive Cyber Security Solutions for both private and public sector networks. When a cyber attack occurs and your clients information is compromised, this can have serious implications for your business reputation and consequently your clients might lose their confidence in you, which can ultimately lead to your demise. What's worse is that many of these hackers have already gained access to networks that run critical infrastructure like power stations, banks, stock markets and even airport hubs. In order to protect your business from these attacks, it's necessary that you not only have the right technological knowledge but also that you're able to keep abreast of all the current cyber threats to your business.
It seems that recently, China has become the cyber attacks capital of the world. Recent reports indicate that there are already over 20 million Chinese hackers that are at work on behalf of the Chinese government. The nation states like China, Russia and Iran are not about to sit back and do nothing about cyber attacks coming from Asia. They have developed their own sophisticated hacking tools and have been working to crack the codes of big business software like Visa and MasterCard. Most people don't realise this, but every single credit card in the world is controlled by one of the big three financial organisations in the world, which are - VISA, MASTERCARD and ISSNAME.
However, while China is becoming increasingly involved in cyber attacks against Australia, just days before this piece was written, an important case was made in Australia against one of these hackers who were operating from within Australia. This particular case involves two Chinese hackers who managed to infiltrate the computers of a business in Australia and stole confidential information which included sensitive customer lists. Furthermore, it was also revealed that the hackers targeted government agencies such as the Department of Revenue, the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) and the Department of Industry. This case is now before the courts in Australia and if found guilty would be an extremely serious breach of trade, in the strictest sense of the word.
So, what does Australia do to protect itself from cyber attacks? Much of its work in the international realm has been about creating an environment where national interests are protected. For example, it is very important that Australia prevent the proliferation of weapons in the Middle East and prevent Iran from obtaining nuclear arms. It has been involved in promoting Internet freedom around the world and working to keep cyberspace free of harmful malware. But it is really hard to say whether it is Australia's fault or if cyber warfare is being done by a third party or by a state actor.
Cyber attacks on Australia are not new, but the country has become more conscious of these issues in the past year. The September 18 release of the Intelligence Services Legislation Review 2021 highlighted many concerns that the government has with regards to the cyber space. The main recommendations of the review were that all publicly available information should be collected and released by the agencies, that existing laws regarding the protection of confidential data should be amended, and that there be a stronger international co-operation to assist law enforcement agencies when it comes to investigating and prosecuting cyber-criminals.
One of the recommendations that the review made was the creation of a Cyber Crime Intelligence Assessment Centre (CCA). This is just another way for the state to work towards protecting its citizens and the country as a whole from the cyber threats that exist today. In addition, Australia is one of the first countries to develop its own Cyber Crime Information Sharing Program (CCISTP) with China. The Chinese have been known to use viruses and malware against Australian systems, so this is a step in the right direction.
The idea behind Cyber Attacks in Australia is that anyone can attack any other person, government entity, or company at any time and for whatever reason they deem fit. With so many high-tech corporations in the world today, it is easy for someone to bring down a government server or a corporation with nothing more than a few mouse clicks. When a cyber attack occurs, the attacker does not need to have any malicious intentions or plans. They simply want to cause a significant amount of monetary or physical damage. They do not want to see an establishment brought down, they do not want someone's identity stolen, and they certainly do not want anyone to gain access to a valuable resource that can be used to help the authorities to fight crime.