Govtech News Wrap – 24 September, 2021

Weekly news wrap of government technology

The Victorian Government unveils its latest Cyber Strategy; AWS to build NZ$7.5 billion Asia Pacific Region in Auckland; and the NSW Government launches its ‘vaccine passport’ trial.

– The Victorian Government has this week unveiled its five-year Cyber Strategy. Among the key priorities of the strategy is to simplify procurement of services to support the adoption of and compliance with the Australian Cyber Security Centre’s (ACSC) Essential Eight maturity model.


– The NSW Government has unveiled its own Covid ‘vaccine passport’ scheme, set to be integrated into its Service NSW app. Vaccine certificate data from the Australian Immunisation Register (AIR) will reportedly begin flowing into the Service NSW app at the start of October under a closed pilot.


Amazon Web Services (AWS) will establish its first Asia Pacific Region in New Zealand within three years. AWS will invest NZ$7.5 billion into the Auckland-based cloud hub.


– The Australian Taxation Office has put forward a request for tender seeking a new digital experience platform (DXP) that would consolidate its websites and deliver customers and staff a “next generational digital experience”, it says.


– The Digital Transformation Agency (DTA) has appointed Unisys to its cloud, telecommunications, and software marketplaces. Unisys currently provides services under the DTA’s hardware marketplace and digital marketplace.

The tech developer said its joining of the three marketplaces “provides government agencies easy access to a broader range of technology solutions and services to support digital transformation.”


– The South Australian Government is set to invest $13.5 million in GPS tech to improve its firefighting capability, deploying automatic vehicle location (AVL) equipment. AVL provides real-time location information of firefighting and other emergency response vehicles during incidents.


– The Federal Government has awarded Accenture the tender to deliver its long-awaited Digital Passenger Declaration (DPD) platform. The new platform will allow passengers entering Australia to complete their DPD on their mobile device or computer, replacing the physical incoming passenger card and the Covid-19 Australian Travel Declaration web form.

The new digital DPD will also support the collection, verification and sharing of any Australian Government-approved and digitally verified travel, health and vaccine status information of international travellers with state and territory public health authorities.


Adobe has secured a $32 million deal with the Federal Government to deliver “core customer experience technology”, GOVDXP, set to underpin myGov’s digital services platform.


– The SA Government has said it will progressively scale up the rollout of its Home Quarantine SA app, among the first of its kind to be released in Australia, with plans to soon manage up to 250 travellers per week through the app.

The app is currently being trialled on 98 “low-risk” returning international travellers who have access to a self-contained home. Users are ‘geo-located’ and must report in, through facial recognition technology within the app, at designated intervals to prove their compliance with state health orders.


– The NSW and Commonwealth governments will also piggyback off the SA Home Quarantine app, announcing the launch of their own pilot home quarantine program for the Greater Sydney region.

The NSW/Commonwealth smartphone app, based on the SA app’s original platform, will also provide a testing schedule and symptom checker. Around 170 people will take part in the initial trial.


– The Federal Government has delivered $3 million in funding to four space tech developers under the third round of its Moon to Mars Supply Chain Capability Improvement initiative. Among the recipients, Queensland-based Gilmour Space Technologies will be granted $1 million to develop high-pressure tolerant vessels for aerospace travel.


– The Southern Adelaide Local Health Network (SALHN) has unveiled an “Australian first” augmented reality research app, Active Research Trail (ART), allowing researchers to “immerse themselves in labs, wards and clinics”.

SALHN Executive Director of Research Strategy, Professor said the Network will look to build on the technology “to take users into hospitals, clinics, Covid-19 vaccinations centres or even health into their homes to change the way people receive information and access healthcare.”


Fortinet has revealed plans to open its newly built Federal Government Integration and Innovation Centre (FGIIC) in Canberra during the fourth quarter. Government agencies will now have access to Fortinet equipment to help securely evaluate and develop network security solutions and de-risk project objectives.


– The NSW Government has reported its Digital Photo Card trial has been a success, with almost 20 per cent of those eligible (24,697 out of a possible 127,290) opting for the digital version of the card. The digital identity card earned a 98 per cent customer satisfaction rating from participants.


NSW Water has launched its Water Project Map, coinciding with its Water Strategy, which offers insight into all water infrastructure projects across the state.


Western Australia’s Main Roads has reportedly migrated its customer relationship management (CRM) system, CONNECT, its Microsoft Dynamics-powered CRM suite, to the cloud as part of a nine-month project.


– The NSW Government is releasing case studies on its use of AI in government, including a deployment by Revenue NSW to help identify and support vulnerable customers early who may face difficulty paying their fines.


– The Federal Government is seeking feedback from the research community and industry on an intellectual property (IP) framework to boost research commercialisation in Australia. Consultations can be submitted until 18 October 2021.


– Department of Home Affairs‘ Type 3 Digital Certificate will be replaced by a new SHA2 certificate at the end of September. Users who send messages to the Integrated Cargo System (in both Industry Test and Production), which uses electronic data interchange (EDI), must switch to the new Home Affairs certificate.

IP Australia has joined DESIGNview, an online tool giving industrial designers access to design applications and registrations provided by 73 participating offices worldwide. DESIGNview will enable IP offices worldwide to find Australian designs.


– An “unprecedented” geological survey conducted by Geoscience Australia, under the Federal Government’s Exploring for the Future program, is set to deliver critical data insights on groundwater, minerals or energy resources present across more than 600,000 square kilometres of south-eastern Australia.