Stories by Tim Lohman

NBN Co won't get extra budget following failed tender

Communications minister, Senator Stephen Conroy, has rejected suggestions that the budget for the National Broadband Network (NBN) is too low, following NBN Co's decision to place its tenders on hold due to its belief the offers were too expensive.

NBN to boost Aussie film industry

Australia’s film industry could dramatically increase its competitiveness through the National Broadband Network (NBN), according to Tony Clark, chairman at South Australian digital animation studio Rising Sun Pictures.

Streaming IP cameras to lift security at Perth CHOGM

WA Police will make use of IP cameras connected by wireless to lift the security surrounding the leaders of some 70 countries and their entourages at the forthcoming 2011 Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) meeting to be held in Perth.

iSOFT extends trading halt

iSoft (ASX:ISF) has extended a trading halt placed on its shares until Next Monday pending a major announcement on the future of the troubled e-health provider.

Creation of cyber security czar mooted in Australian Senate

The creation of an Australian cyber security supremo or ombudsman is needed, but would be of limited use in the promotion of greater online security, a Senate inquiry has heard.
Ninemsn's compliance, regulatory and corporate affairs director, Jennifer Duxbury, told a committee hearing into cyber safety that there were already government agencies responsible for cyber safety issues, such as the Australian Federal Police and the Australian Communications and Media Authority.
“If there was to be an [cyber safety] ombudsman, one of the challenges would be the fact that a lot of cyber safety issues can be offshore, so there is a jurisdictional challenge there as to how an ombudsman would actually deal with complaints which deal with, for example, inappropriate offshore material,” she said.
Microsoft Australia chief security advisor, Stuart Strathdee, said a lot of work was already being carried out on cyber safety but an ombudsman or czar could contribute to greater direction and coordination of existing efforts.
“I think leadership is what’s critical, so we need to get a body or individual in place which demonstrates that they have pulled all of the data together and they are going to focus on two or three key areas and really demonstrate leadership,” he said.
Yahoo!7 legal and policy director, Samantha York, said having a central point of contact through which industry could channel its energy would be beneficial.
“I’d like to avoid yet another person being empowered to deal with these issues without addressing the fact there is already a number of disparate work streams taking place,” she said.
“I hope the aim of creating such a role would be to coordinate all those efforts across departments.”
The idea of a cyber security czar has been floated for some time.
In late 2009, Symantec’s global CIO, David Thompson, said such a role could be of major benefit to the Australian government as it looks to increase the security of government infrastructure and data[1].
“Government leaders need to take responsibility for making [security] a top priority and protecting their infrastructure,” he said at the time.
“Also, appointing individuals to head those initiatives up, otherwise your efforts are spread so thin across so many areas that your really don’t get the value.
"It’s an area that needs increased focus, but also increased spending to secure and manage our government entities.”

Mandatory ISP-level filter won't lift cyber safety

The Federal Government’s proposed mandatory internet service provider-level filter has been dealt another blow with some of the Internet’s largest companies arguing the technology alone will not increase the cyber safety of young Australians.

No classified data on misplaced USB stick: Defence

Australia's data loss prevention and encryption vendors will no doubt be salivating at the Defence's confirmation that a USB stick allegedly found by a radio announcer on a Qantas flight does indeed contain Defence information.

WA Police upgrading digital radio network

Western Australia Police will rip and replace its regional analogue radio system and move to digital as a means of providing secure and robust communications for front-line officers across the whole state.

Greens to block telco interception bill

The Greens will seek to block the federal government’s proposed Telecommunications Interception and Intelligence Services Legislation Amendment Bill 2010, communications spokesperson, Scott Ludlum has told the Senate.

Telco interception bill needs 'major repairs'

The Australian Greens have called for an overhaul of the Federal Government's Telecommunications Interception and Intelligence Services Legislation Amendment Bill 2010, claiming the bill is in need of "major repair".

Vodafone replacing 8000 network sites

Vodafone has signed up Huawai to help it replace all its 2G and 3G radio access equipment across its entire Australian network as part of its major network improvement initiative.