Thumbs up for national cybersecurity strategy

3 minute read

The Medical Technology Association of Australia welcomes the federal government’s investment in a threat sharing platform for the health sector.

The Medical Technology Association of Australia (MTAA) has welcomed the release of the federal government’s 2023-2030 Australian Cyber Security Strategy.

The strategy’s launch follows the release of the MTAA’s Digital Health Report in July which highlighted cyber security as an urgent national problem that required immediate action.

The MTAA’s report also noted cyber-attacks were a growing threat to healthcare, with a number of significant security incidents having already affected Australians. 

MTAA CEO Ian Burgess said the MedTech industry commended the Government’s investment into health-specific cyber security through a direct investment of $4.9 million to build a threat sharing platform for the health sector.

“As the world we live in continues to be enveloped by digital technologies, the risks that come with the benefits of such changes requires real and coordinated responses from government and industry to protect information and people,” said Mr Burgess.

“We were pleased to see the government has adopted our report’s recommendation to implement a body similar to Singapore’s Cyber Security Labelling Scheme, which was developed in consultation with industry, and serves as an excellent example of a voluntary regulation that helps increase consumer trust in medical devices.

“This directly aligns with Australia’s own strategy ‘to help consumers make informed choices about the security of devices on the market’.”

As the peak body representing more than 100 MedTech companies in Australia, the MTAA has called for the implementation of uniform cyber security provisions for all players in the supply chain. 

Mr Burgess said the MTAA is looking forward to continuing to work with government and health sector stakeholders to develop a local fit-for-purpose cyber security framework that protects Australians and health technologies.

The Australian government released the 2023-2030 Australian Cyber Security Strategy last week, a roadmap that aims to improve national cyber security, manage cyber risks and better support citizens and Australian businesses to manage the cyber environment around them.

This will be achieved through six cyber initiatives, each of which provides an additional layer of defence against cyber threats and places Australian citizens and businesses, including:

  • Strong businesses and citizens.
  • Safe technology.
  • World-class threat sharing and blocking.
  • Protected critical infrastructure.
  • Sovereign capabilities.
  • Resilient region and global leadership.

The 2023-2030 Australian Cyber Security Action Plan supplements the strategy and details the key initiatives that will commence during the next two years.

The government also plans to shortly release a consultation paper to work directly with industry to inform proposed legislative reform on new initiatives to address gaps in existing laws; and amendments to the Security of Critical Infrastructure Act 2018 to strengthen protections for critical infrastructure.

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