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WA Auditor General recommends inter-agency cooperation to counter malware

ZDNet

Western Australia's Office of the Auditor General (OAG) has made six recommendations to state government agencies after it was found six agencies had previously been the target of malware campaigns. According to the OAG, the six agencies probed -- which included the Department of the Attorney General, Department of Mines and Petroleum, Department of Transport, Main Roads Western Australia, and the Office of the Government Chief Information Officer (OGCIO) -- were under constant threat, which it said highlighted the need for improved central governance arrangements to identify, warn of, and prevent attacks. In its report [PDF], Malware in the WA State Government, the OAG said as a result of the audit, it made "detailed recommendations" to each agency that came under the microscope. The explicit details were not published, but instead, the OAG offered up the broader six recommendations it made, which included an in-depth assessment of the risk to the agency malware poses, improving any controls the OAG identified as ineffective, and that each agency consider additional controls to better secure its networks, systems, and data against malware. TPG to focus on FttB, mobile, corporate business to manage NBN margin squeeze Productivity Commission draft report calls time on USO as NBN looms Risk vs. Opportunity: Data use and availability in Australia NSW government seeks partner to trial Uber-like public transport Optus inks AU$40m contract extension with security firm Suretek Under the careful watch of the OGCIO, the Auditor General said it wants to see the WA public sector consider methods to foster "collaboration, information, and resource sharing" between agencies.


Victorian government trials touchless pedestrian crossing technology in Melbourne

ZDNet

The Victorian government has teamed up with Johnson Controls and Braums to trial the use of touchless pedestrian crossings sensors in Melbourne to minimise transmission of the coronavirus. The automated pedestrian crossing, developed by Johnson Controls, uses infrared technology so pedestrians do not have to physically push the button. Instead, they simply wave their hand in front of the button, which will trigger the signalised crossing. The push-button, however, will continue to exist for the visually impaired. The technology is initially being trialled in front of Melbourne's Royal Women's Hospital and the Royal Melbourne Hospital.


Newcrest blazing a trail with big data

#artificialintelligence

Addressing the South Australian government's recent Copper to the World conference in Adelaide, Newcrest's chief information and digital officer, Gavin Wood, gave a rundown on what had already been achieved at Newcrest with data science, virtual and augmented reality and artificial intelligence. He also talked about the benefits delivered by crowd sourcing, although this can also create some unique challenges of its own. "If you can imagine, an experienced operator at a site being told by a university student in Argentina the answer for optimising their part of the plant is quite different to something they believe from their experience of 20 or so years. Those are real challenges for our business," Wood said. He said data science coupled with machine learning had alr...


Victorian government invests AU$5.2 million in tech upgrade to move VCAT to remote work

ZDNet

The Victorian government said its AU$5.2 million technology upgrade would ensure that the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) can continue to hear planning and other matters remotely during the coronavirus pandemic. To be rolled out over 12 weeks, the upgrades include project management software, software licenses, information technology hardware, and digitisation and scanning of paper files. "We're giving VCAT the resources and the ability to continue their vital work remotely -- delivering access to justice for all Victorians while we respond to the challenges of physical distancing during coronavirus," Attorney-General Jill Hennessy. When these upgrades are completed, the Victorian government said any current and pending matters, especially Planning and Environment List issues which were put on hold, could then be heard. See also: Is COVID-19 the push businesses need to fast-track technology adoption?


Crowdfunding campaign leads to major discovery of healthy Tasmanian devils

Mashable

Tasmanian devils are on the brink of extinction, but there's a glimmer of hope. Scientists exploring Tasmania's southwest wilderness discovered a group of the animals that so far appears to be completely free of the contagious cancer that is ravaging the rest of the population. According to the Tasmanian government, a team led by Dr. Sam Fox trapped 14 healthy devils free of Devil Facial Tumour Disease -- a cancer that spreads from devil to devil and results in the marsupials' death. The Independent reports that, since the discovery of the disease, the population of wild devils has declined by 80 percent. So yeah, this is a big deal.