New centre as-a-service to give Aus Govt a major cybersec boost

Australian government agencies will have a new 24/7 cybersecurity monitor at their ready, with Macquarie Government announcing the launch of its security operations centre as-a-service (SOCaaS).

The new SOCaaS centre will give specialists in Canberra and Sydney “full cybersecurity coverage, including 24/7 event monitoring and alert response”, Macquarie said in a statement.

The service will operate through Macquarie’s security information and event management (SIEM) system, which allows its staff to monitor agency workloads and events as well as enforce compliance.

Aidan Tudehope, Managing Director, Macquarie Government, said the SOCaaS will “[free] Government resources to focus on other security tasks,” stressing that government often lacks the security resources to effectively monitor these workloads.

“Building the right sovereign capabilities is vital both to our ability to hold ground in the war on cybercrime and remain competitive in an increasingly digital economy,” Tudehope said.

To support the SOCaaS operations, Macquarie will also expand its existing graduate program, giving “more skilled Australian graduates experience with the new service, responding to and solving increasingly complex incidents”.

“Government agencies often struggle to attract strong security talent and they need these scarce resources focused on much more than monitoring,” Tudehope said.

“SOCaaS places that role in the hands of reliable professionals whose sole job is to manage it, freeing Government resources to focus on other security tasks.”

Macquarie said the new services provide a tangible response to the Federal Government’s 2020 Cyber Security Strategy, which stressed the “cybersecurity skills gap in Australia” as an ongoing concern for industry and government.

“AustCyber estimates that there were 2,300 fewer skilled cyber security professionals than required in Australia in 2018. Up to an additional 17,600 will be needed by 2026,” the strategy said.

Tudehope said: “All government agencies need to be exemplars in taking a holistic approach to cyber security and building the right skills for our future.”

“We look forward to working with the Government on the new strategy and continuing to play our part through our newly enhanced graduate program and our cyber security scholarship with Western Sydney University (WSU).”