Cybersecurity:Threat and Opportunity for Asia-Pacific Region and Australia

Australia’s Ambassador for Cyber Affairs, Dr. Tobias Feakin, will give a keynote at the 8th Annual Billington CyberSecurity Summit, Sept. 13, Washington, D.C. on Australia’s Cybersecurity Priorities.

The Asia-Pacific region (APAC) is facing unique cyber threats, but those threats can become opportunities to propel economic growth in the region, Australian officials said at the RSA 2017 Asia Pacific and Japan conference last week.

The Hon. Dan Tehan, the Australian minister with the cybersecurity portfolio, said cyber attacks and threats are posing one of the greatest challenges to the Asia-Pacific region. “We know that eight out of the world’s ten countries most threatened by malicious cyber activity are in Asia,” Tehan said.

“In terms of cyber threats, the Asia-Pacific has a major vulnerability in both its critical infrastructure and its growing financial sector.”

On the flip side, however, Tehan said, “News of cyber attacks should be opportunities to create jobs, create products and fix the problem. The money we can save is the cybersecurity dividend,” he said.

“There is nowhere like our region that is as equipped or able to meet this challenge,” he said. “We are the world’s technology region. No other continent can boast of such advantages in production spread across so many different economies.”

“Investing in this challenge is not only something that will keep us safe, but an opportunity to drive an economic boom for the region.”

Echoing Tehan, Dr. Tobias Feakin, the Australian Ambassador for Cyber Affairs, said, “Cyberspace offers us an enormous opportunity for economic growth in APAC. It’s government’s job to enable businesses to take advantage of these wonderful online opportunities.”  His remarks were also made at the RSA conference.

As Australia’s inaugural Ambassador for Cyber Affairs, Dr. Feakin leads Australia’s whole‑of‑government international engagement to advance and protect Australia’s national security, foreign policy, economic and trade, and development interests in the Internet and in cyberspace.