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Cyber Attacks Pound Aussie Outfits Daily: New Govt. Report

Australian businesses and other organisations are experiencing cyber attacks at a much more frequent rate than most Australians have imagined, a new government report says.

Australia’s largest companies and key government agencies are under daily cyber attack, with 90 percent having been targeted for industrial espionage, hacking or security breaches in the past year, according to the 2016 security survey conducted by the Australian Cyber Security Centre.

The survey is claimed to be the first to look across both the government and private sectors, checking how prepared Oz organisations are to meet the growing threat.

It found that most Australian organisations face numerous malicious cyber threats on a daily basis. So-called spear-phishing e-mail attacks alone see many organisations affected up to hundreds of times a day, it says.

Some 86 percent of organisations surveyed had experienced attempts to compromise the confidentiality, integrity or availability of their network data or system. Just over half (58pc) had experienced at least one incident that successfully compromised data and/or systems.

And some 51pc of all organisations surveyed said that they tend to be alerted to possible cyer breaches by external parties before they detect it themselves.

“These figures reinforce the message to all organisations that experiencing a cyber incident is not a matter of “if” but “when”, and what type, the report says.

Underlining the Government’s concern at the figures, PM Malcolm Turnbull will today head up a forum of executives from companies including Westpac, Wesfarmers, Commonwealth Bank, Qantas, Transgrid and US-based defence industries Lockheed Martin and Northrop Grumman, as well as cyber-intelligence officials, to discuss how the private sector can work with government and intelligence operations to mitigate the effect of attacks.

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