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Canberra to create $8m ‘one-stop-shop’ small business cyber service


The government's program will build digital resilience and provide support in the immediate aftermath of an attack at no cost to victims.

By Christine Chen 9 minute read

The government has committed $8.1 million to create a free, “one-stop-shop” support service for small businesses that have suffered a cyber attack.

Minister for Small Business Julie Collins said IT businesses could apply for the grant to become the provider of the government’s Small Business Cyber Resilience Service from now until 26 April.

“We want to help [small business] to operate securely online,” she said. “We want small businesses and their customers and the community to feel secure from cyber threats.”

“We’ll continue to work hard to support small businesses, and ensure they remain at the heart of the Albanese Labor Government’s decision making.”

The cyber resilience service was announced with the government’s $600 million 2023–2030 Australian Cyber Security Strategy in December in a bid to make Australia “the most cyber secure nation” in the world.

The strategy specified six “shields” that included the adoption of safer technology standards, better information sharing, protection for critical infrastructure and attracting more cyber talent.

The cyber resilience service would be implemented as part of the first shield to be a free, “one‑stop‑shop for small businesses to build their cyber resilience and capability and provide support when impacted by a cyber incident”, the government said in a statement on Friday.

“This includes triaging small businesses accessing the service, conducting an individual assessment of the small business and developing a tailored plan to improve their cyber security, recommending specific actions, tools and guidance best suited to the small business’ risk, situation and capability.”

In the last financial year, nearly 94,000 cyber crimes were reported to the Australian Cyber Security Centre, the government said. This was a 23 per cent spike from 2021–22 owing to the rapid digitisation of many small businesses.

“Many small businesses have rapidly digitised, bringing new opportunities but also increasing their vulnerability to cyber incidents which can cause financial loss, reputational damage, and interruption to trading,” the government said.

A cyber attack costs a small business $46,000 on average, a sum that could be devastating given their limited ability to absorb these losses amid a difficult economic environment.

The cyber resilience service would also build on the government’s $23.4 million Cyber Wardens program that offers free online training for small business owners and staff, the government said.

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Christine Chen

Christine Chen


Christine Chen is a graduate journalist at Accountants Daily and Accounting Times, the leading sources of news, insight, and educational content for professionals in the accounting sector.

Previously, Christine has written for City Hub, the South Sydney Herald and Honi Soit. She has also produced online content for LegalVision and completed internships at EY and Deloitte.

Christine has a commerce degree from the University of Western Australia and is studying a Juris Doctor degree at the University of Sydney. 

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