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Prime Minister of Australia

The Hon Malcolm Turnbull MP

Australia and the United States strengthen ties on cyber security

20 January 2016

Prime Minister

Today Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull announced a strengthening of ties between Australia and the US on cyber security.

To build on our already close cyber cooperation, our two nations will hold an annual Australia-US Cyber Security Dialogue. This new dialogue, to be jointly convened by the Australian Strategic Policy Institute and the US Centre for Strategic and International Studies, will engage senior representatives from both countries’ business, academic and government sectors to discuss common cyber threats, promote cyber security innovation and shape new business opportunities.

We will continue to work closely together to ensure the internet remains open, free and secure by promoting peacetime ‘norms’ for cyberspace. Like the US, Australia supports a cyberspace in which nations abide by international law and their behaviour is supported by agreed norms (or standards for appropriate conduct). Such standards will lead to practical confidence building measures that help to reduce the incidence of malicious cyber activity and the risk of conflict.

But we also must be ready to respond to cyber incidents when and if they occur. This means we need to better understand how Australia and the US would cooperate in the event of a significant cyber incident affecting both nations. To achieve this, we agreed to improve our response efforts beginning with mapping our cyber incident response structures and mechanisms with the aim in the future to exercising our incident response measures.

To meet the growing threat of cybercrime, we will also enhance cybercrime cooperation between our nations, including through increased exchanges between respective law enforcement and cybercrime experts and more collaboration on cybercrime investigations.

Finally, we agreed to enhance the coordination of our cyber capacity building efforts in the Indo-Pacific, to help our partners in this region increase their cyber security and their capacity to combat cybercrime.