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Vic allocates $17.6m for cybersecurity strategy

By Dylan Bushell-Embling
Tuesday, 08 May, 2018

Vic allocates $17.6m for cybersecurity strategy

The Victorian Government has allocated $17.6 million over the next four years to fund a new cybersecurity strategy aimed at strengthening detection and prevention capabilities and responses to attacks on Victorian Government IT systems.

A further $2.3 million has been allocated for the next financial year aimed at improving Victoria Police’s ability to tackle organised technology-enabled crime, including crime syndicates trafficking drugs and firearms over the dark web as well as online child exploitation.

The funding will be used to improve Police’s ability to gather and record evidence through digital forensic services, conduct covert operations and gather intelligence.

The latest budget also allocates $14 million over two years towards developing the Victoria Centre for Data Insights and the Behavioural Insights Unit.

These functions are designed to improve the state’s public sector capability to address policy problems through the use of evidence-based data analytics.

With the investment, the government aims to reduce the need for external data expert contractors, while improving the efficacy and cost-effectiveness of data capability development initiatives.

The Department of Premier and Cabinet will meanwhile allocate $2.7 million over four years towards establishing a new information culture across the state. The funding will be used to improve the ability and responsiveness of the Office of the Victorian Information Commissioner to respond to freedom of information requests.

In addition, the department’s budget for improving digital government and communications has been raised by more than 400% to $47.5 million for the year ahead.

With this funding, the government has set targets including increasing the number of average monthly visits to the website to 300,000, from an expected 245,000 this year.

The department is also targeting 2000 eligible ideas and 150,000 votes from its new Pick My Project initiative, which involves giving local residents the ability to choose which community-building projects the government pursues.

Other technology-related initiatives covered under the budget include $2.8 million towards the establishment of a new Tram Automatic Vehicle Monitoring system designed to manage and monitor metropolitan tram service operations, including by providing real-time information on tram services to enhance the reliability of passenger information.

The budget of Land Use Victoria has meanwhile been increased significantly, in part to allow the body to develop a new online platform to simplify access to information on government land.

Finally, the government has revealed plans to establish a targeted digital roadshow to provide advice on how Victorian small and medium-sized businesses can make the most of the digital economy while reducing security risks.

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