Asianet NewsableAsianet Newsable

Australia to alter its privacy laws after Optus cyber attack; know details here

The personal information of up to 10 million consumers, or nearly 40 per cent of the population, was stolen in one of Australia's greatest data breaches, according to Optus, owned by Singapore Telecoms Ltd.

Australia to alter its privacy laws after Optus cyber attack; know details here - adt
First Published Sep 26, 2022, 2:53 PM IST

After hackers targeted Australia's second-largest telecoms firm, Prime Minister Anthony Albanese announced plans to change privacy rules to allow banks to be alerted faster to cyber attacks on companies.

Optus, owned by Singapore Telecoms Ltd, announced last week that the personal information of up to 10 million customers, or roughly 40 per cent of the population, had been compromised in one of Australia's largest data breaches.

According to the company, the attacker's IP address, or unique computer identifier, appeared to move between European countries, which declined to elaborate on how security was compromised.

The incident, according to Albanese, was a 'huge wake-up call' for the corporate sector, as some state actors and criminal groups wanted to access people's data.

"We want to make sure... that we change some of the privacy provisions there so that if people get caught up like this, the banks can be informed so that they can protect their customers as well," he told 4BC radio.

Clare O'Neil, Minister of Cybersecurity, told parliament that resolving a legally and technically complex issue would require "very substantial" reform.

"One critical question is whether the cyber security requirements that we impose on large telecommunications providers in this country are appropriate," she said.

"A data breach of this magnitude would result in fines of hundreds of millions of dollars in other jurisdictions."

Optus has notified customers whose licence or passport numbers have been stolen, according to an emailed statement from a company spokesperson. Payment information and account passwords were not compromised, according to the statement.

Australia has been looking to strengthen cyber defences and pledged in 2020 to spend A$1.66 billion ($1.1 billion) over a decade to strengthen firm and home network infrastructure.

Also Read: Stampede breaks out at Secunderabad's Gymkhana Ground over India vs Australia T20 tickets, 4 injured

Also Read: Confessions of a sex addict: Belina 'Love' Rygier reveals what led her to sleep with 700 men

Also Read: LinkedIn is now the most impersonated brand by phishing scammers: Report

Follow Us:
Download App:
  • android
  • ios