Internet service providers such as Telstra and iiNet could be forced to take responsibility for scrubbing the web of viruses and malware under laws being considered by the Federal Government.
The radical plan comes as the Government warns of the growing cost to small business and households from sophisticated web scams.
Minister assisting the Prime Minister on Cyber Security Dan Tehan says the onus is on telecommunications companies to develop products to stop their customers being infected with viruses.
“Just as we trust banks to hold our money, just as we trust doctors with our health, in a digital age we need to be able to trust telecommunications companies to protect our information from threats,” Mr Tehan says in a column in today’s The West Australian.
He said the plan did not amount to web filtering and he claimed previous efforts to do so had been “ill-advised”.
It is understood Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull met telecommunications companies this week where he delivered the message the Government expected them to do more to shut dodgy sites and scams.
Mr Tehan said active cyber defence should disrupt malicious cyber activity by blocking or diverting suspect traffic. He said the change was a shift from the existing passive approach of dealing with the scams once they hit.
Mr Tehan will be in Britain this week where he is expected to be briefed by signals intelligence agency GCHQ on measures to safeguard against electronic efforts to interfere in the British elections.
After claims of hacking of the US elections, the Government called in Australian political parties to advise on threats and measures to safeguard their systems.
Mr Tehan said the Government was also working on systems to monitor data on the web, then block suspect sites from government computers.
It was revealed in 2015 the Weather Bureau was hacked from overseas. There were suggestions a foreign power was attempting to access Department of Defence systems through a back door.
“The Government will investigate existing legislation and where appropriate remove any roadblocks that may be preventing the Government and private sector from delivering such services,” Mr Tehan said.
Read more here: https://thewest.com.au/news/wa/push-on-telcos-over-cybercrime-ng-b88451159z