Friday, 11 December 2020 10:55

Macquarie Telecom welcomes publication of Security Legislation Amendment (Critical Infrastructure) Bill


The Critical Infrastructure Bill, introduced by the Minister for Home Affairs, Peter Dutton MP, will recognise telecommunications and data centres as critical national infrastructure for the first time.

David Tudehope, the CEO of Macquarie Telecom Group said: "The COVID-19 pandemic and sudden lockdowns have highlighted the economy’s dependence on telecommunications and data services, and Australians’ expectation that these services will be accessible even in the worst of circumstances," said

“But the lockdowns also highlighted that these industries were not actually officially recognised as being essential or critical to the functioning of society.”

“This new legislation will rectify this as it recognises the infrastructure that enables our digital economy to function as critical infrastructure that needs to be secured from all hazards just as our water, energy and other vital national assets are.”

Macquarie reports that it "believes the legislation will help ensure the resilience and security of Australia’s digital and physical infrastructure in the face of growing risks. The company believes this is a shared responsibility, with government providing the leadership and intel needed to guide critical infrastructure owners and operators".

Tudehope continued, stating: “As a provider of cloud, data centre and telecommunications services to governments and businesses, we understand the risks to data security and networks.

“These risks are significant and underscore the importance of a comprehensive approach to national security. Securing government and critical business data involves more than just protecting the physical infrastructure from unauthorised access. It requires stringent compliance with internationally recognised standards and the application of best-in-class technology and operational frameworks.”

While welcoming the new framework, Macquarie says it "believes that the new security expectations in relation to critical business data should apply more generally across all critical infrastructure sectors".

Tudehope concluded: “A critical infrastructure operator’s data should be treated as a critical asset regardless of whether it is kept inhouse, hosted by a third-party cloud or data centre, or located offshore. It should be subject to the same security expectations and standards regardless of who is storing it or where it is located".

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Alex Zaharov-Reutt

One of Australia’s best-known technology journalists and consumer tech experts, Alex has appeared in his capacity as technology expert on all of Australia’s free-to-air and pay TV networks on all the major news and current affairs programs, on commercial and public radio, and technology, lifestyle and reality TV shows. Visit Alex at Twitter here.

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