DARWIN - The northern Australian city of Darwin marked the 77th anniversary of a Japanese air raid that killed hundreds during World War II on Tuesday. The Bombing of Darwin, which occurred on Feb. 19, 1942, was the first attack by Japanese forces on the Australian mainland and is estimated to have killed about 250 people, as well as destroying 30 aircraft and nine ships. Administrator of the Northern Territory Vicki O'Halloran, the Queen's representative in the territory, said in remarks at a service that the arrival of the war in Darwin was responsible for "fundamentally changing Australia." Darwin's close proximity to present-day Indonesia and its build-up of military infrastructure made the port city a prime target for Japan. In addition to Australian ships, there were a number of U.S. Navy vessels in the harbor at the time of the attack.
On Australia Day, in late January, the nation will celebrate the achievements of the selfless, the brave and the inspired. The nominees for the coveted Australian of the Year award include a scientist treating spinal cord injuries, a retired rugby league player and a billionaire mining tycoon. Also in the running for Australia's most prestigious civic honour is a former Sudanese child soldier, who arrived in Australia a 14-year-old illiterate refugee. Named after the god of rain, Deng Adut is now a successful criminal lawyer in Sydney and the 2017 New South Wales (NSW) Australian of the Year for his work with African migrants. "Deng represents the very best of what makes our country great, and has channelled his success into helping hundreds of people in the state's Sudanese community navigate their way through the Australian legal system," said the NSW Premier Mike Baird.
The Victorian government has announced the recipients of the first round of LaunchVic funding, handing out AU 6.5 million to universities, startups, incubators, and projects to "drive new ideas" and create jobs in the state. Global IT firm Dimension Data will receive a AU 450,000 boost from the LaunchVic startup kitty to set up a cybersecurity incubator with Deakin University. The incubator will be located at Deakin's Waurn Ponds campus and hopes to address the skills shortage in the Australian cybersecurity industry by accelerating the development of unique cybersecurity solutions and intellectual property. The incubator will sit alongside the new cybersecurity degree program being developed at Deakin University, which is scheduled to commence in 2017. Headquartered in Johannesburg, South Africa, Dimension Data was acquired by Japanese telco giant NTT in 2010 for 3.2 billion.
Telecommunications provider BT and the New South Wales government have announced the launch of a global cybersecurity research and development (R&D) centre in Sydney. The NSW government's Jobs for NSW invested AU$1.67 million in support of the centre, the state's Minister for Innovation and Better Regulation Matt Kean said, with BT making a AU$2 million investment in capital infrastructure. "This facility is a major boost for our economy, and will be a real-time nerve centre protecting large enterprises, industries, governments, and even nations from cyber attack," Kean said. BT will also make a "multimillion investment" in order to employ cybersecurity specialists, Kean added. According to BT, the cybersecurity hub expands on its already existing security operations centre (SOC) in North Sydney, and will provide 172 new jobs over the next five years, including 38 graduate positions.
NEC has announced plans to establish a AU 4.38 million Global Security Intel Centre (GSIC) in Adelaide that will focus on Internet of Things (IoT) security. The IT services firm expects the cost of cyber attacks against enterprise and government IT systems to rise as the adoption of smart technologies and connected devices that make up the IoT accelerates. Once established, the centre will form part of NEC's cybersecurity network, with the GSIC expected to complement security-focused facilities located globally, including Japan and Singapore. The South Australian government has welcomed the GSIC, calling it a major boost to the state's IT capabilities. "Cybersecurity is a rapidly growing sector, and is attracting increasing attention and investment.