Monday, 09 November 2020
Media release

Critical Infrastructure exposure draft out for consultation

The Morrison Government is committed to protecting Australia’s critical infrastructure to secure the essential services all Australians rely on; everything from electricity and water, to healthcare and groceries.

The Security Legislation Amendment (Critical Infrastructure) Bill 2020 follows consultation with industry on the Protecting Critical Infrastructure and Systems of National Significance package, announced in August as part of the Cyber Security Strategy 2020.

The proposed reforms outlined in the Exposure Draft Bill include:

  • a Positive Security Obligation for critical infrastructure entities, supported by sector-specific requirements, co-designed with industry
  • Enhanced Cyber Security Obligations for entities most important to the nation (systems of national significance) – centred around a strengthened relationship with government, and
  • Government assistance to industry in response to immediate and serious cyber-attacks to Australian systems.

Minister for Home Affairs Peter Dutton encouraged submissions from all interested parties in the second phase of consultation.

“The increasingly interconnected nature of critical infrastructure exposes vulnerabilities that could result in significant consequences to our economy, security and sovereignty and industry will be important to the success of these reforms,” Mr Dutton said.

“We will continue to work closely with industry and other stakeholders to implement our plan to secure essential services – electricity, water, groceries and so on – without imposing an unnecessary regulatory burden.”

Submissions can be made online via the Department of Home Affairs website: https://www.homeaffairs.gov.au/reports-and-publications/submissions-and-discussion-papers/protecting-critical-infrastructure-systems. The exposure draft can also be found here.

The closing date for submissions is 27 November 2020.