Breach, Threat Management, Data Security, Privacy

Widespread data breach prompts Australia to consider stronger cyber laws

More robust cybersecurity rules are being considered by the Australian government following the large data breach at Optus, the nation's second-largest wireless carrier, which has compromised 9.8 million individuals' data, according to The Associated Press. Such a cyberattack, which was first discovered last Wednesday, was an "unprecedented theft of consumer information in Australian history," with significant amounts of data, including passport numbers and driver's licenses, stolen from 2.8 million current and former Optus clients, said Australian Cybersecurity Minister Clare O'Neil. Meanwhile, the Australian Federal Police is already investigating reports regarding the sale of the stolen data. While such a significant breach would typically result in fines for the compromised firm, Australian law does not. "A very substantial reform task is going to emerge from a breach of this scale and size. One significant question is whether the cybersecurity requirements that we place on large telecommunications providers in this country are fit for purpose," O'Neil added.

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