Pilot program to uplift cyber security resilience for defence SMEs

A new pilot program to uplift the cyber resilience of small businesses in the defence supply chain will help local SMEs secure defence contracts and improve market competitiveness.

AustCyber nodes in South Australia and Queensland have partnered with Victorian-based Cynch, to pilot a cyber fitness program with targeted defence SMEs in each state that will address the cyber security resilience needs of the defence supply chain.

The project will provide access to a reputable program of quality cyber security training and support intended to result in cyber hygiene uplift, which protects businesses against the loss of time, money, private information and reputational damage that come with cyber threats, while also helping them meet the criteria needed to work with the Defence sector.

The insights gained will shed light on growing areas of risk and highlight where more support is needed.

Chief Executive of Defence SA, Richard Price, said the government was pleased to support the initiative which would provide the practical assistance needed to significantly uplift the cyber fitness of participating SMEs.

“South Australia has a highly skilled and capable SME sector that has a long and proud history of contributing to some of Australia’s most complex defence projects,” Mr Price said.

“The South Australian Government is committed to creating a business climate that supports local industry to compete for both prime and global supply chain roles in Defence and security projects.

“This initiative has the potential to bolster these endeavours, providing our local SMEs with the tools and capability needed to protect them against cyber security risks and ensure they are at the forefront of best practice.”

Manager of the South Australia Cyber Security Innovation Node Paula Oliver said the announcement would have wide ranging benefits.

“With a substantial proportion of businesses in South Australia being SMEs supplying to the defence industry in state and in country, this initiative will help uplift their cyber resilience and capability, while increasing their ability to secure defence contracts and be more competitive in the market,” she said.

Outcomes of the pilot are hoped to inform a future expansion of the program for more SMEs across Australia.