Tuesday, 19 November 2019
Media release

Lifting the cyber security of the Internet of Things

​The Australian Government is seeking community and industry input on a voluntary Code of Practice to improve the security of the Internet of Things for consumers in Australia, including the security of everyday smart devices that connect to the internet; such as smart TVs, watches and home speakers. 

With over 64 billion devices expected to be connected to the internet globally by 2025, Minister for Home Affairs Peter Dutton said that ensuring the security and integrity of these devices will enhance the way we live and work.

"This rapid growth in connectivity brings significant benefits to all Australians," Mr Dutton said.

"However, many of these devices have poor cyber security features, posing risks to Australia families, our economy and national security. 

"The safety of Australians and the security of our economy is paramount. That's why the Morrison Government has developed a voluntary Code of Practice to inform industry about the cyber security features expected of these devices in Australia."

The Code of Practice, consisting of 13 principles, was developed drawing on the technical expertise of the Australian Cyber Security Centre (ACSC). It also clearly aligns with guidance provided by the United Kingdom and is consistent with other international standards.

"We're releasing the Code of Practice for public consultation because we want to ensure that the expectations of all Australians are met regarding cyber security," Mr Dutton said.

"Along with our Five Eyes partners we share the expectation that manufacturers should develop connected devices with security built in by design," Mr Dutton said.

In acknowledgement of the global nature of this issue, the Morrison Government co-signed a Statement of Intent regarding the security of the Internet of Things with Five Eyes partners in London July 2019. 

The Government will also work with states and territories to ensure an aligned and harmonious approach.

Further initiatives for lifting the security of the Internet of Things will be explored through the 2020 Cyber Security Strategy.

Public consultation on the Code of Practice will run until 1 March 2020.  The document and further information on the consultation is available at: https://www.homeaffairs.gov.au/reports-and-publications/submissions-and-discussion-papers/code-of-practice