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Policy brief launched encouraging clearer communication, skilled recruitment and retention for offensive cyber capability


Sydney, Tuesday 10 April; The Australian Strategic Policy Institute (ASPI) has called for clarity of communication, deeper industry engagement, and innovative recruitment and retention in a paper released today in partnership with ACS.  

The policy brief entitled Australia’s Offensive Cyber Capability and authored by Fergus Hanson, Head of International Cyber Policy Centre (ICPC), and Tom Uren, Visiting Fellow in the ICPC, makes six recommendations designed to support Australia’s offensive cyber capabilities announced by Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull in 2016.

The brief encourages the Government to consider increasing investment in Australia’s offensive cyber capability to create an asymmetric capability – one that will not be easily countered by many regional military forces. In addition, it recommends recruiting Australia’s top technical talent, raise salaries, and innovative retention strategies such as a pool of alumni reservists.

In addition, the brief calls for data to be classified at a lower level in the classification structure – enabling a greater flow of information between the public and private sector.

ACS President Yohan Ramasundara welcomed the policy brief and its recommendations.

“The modern battlefield now encompasses cyber space – where its soldiers are equipped not with weapons, but with keyboards.”, he said.

“ACS’ aim with this policy brief is to improve clarity of communication around cyber in support of Australia’s cyber capabilities. Continued investment is also pivotal to keep ahead of and defend against the latest threats, as is ensuring that we have the skills and talent to drive cyber capabilities into the future.”

“This means attracting and keeping the brightest young minds and experienced technology veterans to support and grow a pipeline of cyber specialists for Australia.”


Further information

Thomas Shanahan, 0417 678 474


About the ACS

The ACS is the professional association for Australia's Information and Communication Technology (ICT) sector. More than 30,000 ACS members work in business, education, government and the community. The ACS exists to create the environment and provide the opportunities for members and partners to succeed. The ACS strives for ICT professionals to be recognised as drivers of innovation in our society, relevant across all sectors, and to promote the formulation of effective policies on ICT and related matters. Visit for more information.