Security: Australia Aims for Whole-of-Government Zero Trust Objective

The Australian federal government has announced its goal to establish a “zero trust culture” within the Australian public service by 2030. This commitment was outlined in the government’s revised cyber security strategy, which was released on Wednesday. In addition to this goal, the government plans to expand the role of the national cyber security coordinator to oversee a comprehensive cyber security improvement plan for the entire government. The strategy highlights the need for the government to hold itself to the same cyber security standards it imposes on industry. While details on the implementation of the “zero trust culture” are scarce, it is expected to involve enhancements in identity verification and privileged access management. The strategy also includes plans to implement internationally-recognized zero trust controls and improve cyber maturity across Commonwealth departments and agencies. The government acknowledges the challenges of achieving this uplift in cyber maturity at state, territory, and local government levels but is committed to addressing all potential weaknesses in cyber security across the public sector. Furthermore, the government plans to establish an internal cyber security program to support government entities in improving their security controls. The strategy also calls for the designation of government systems of significance that require higher security standards. Lastly, the government intends to enhance the cyber skills of the Australian public service, although no specific details were provided.

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