CIO

AustCyber seeking cyber projects to match-fund

Third round of Projects Fund now open

AustCyber (the Australian Cyber Security Growth Network) is seeking expressions of interest from industry-led cyber security projects that want access to up to $3 million in funding.

This is the third round of the network’s Projects Fund, a $15 million, three-year program from which $6.5 million in funding has already been awarded.

The federally funded private entity established the scheme for large and small businesses working on projects that address one or more of the four ‘knowledge priorities’ put forward in its Cyber Security Sector Competitiveness Plan released in 2017. This year the criteria for projects has been expanded, and those that do not address a specific ‘sector challenge’ will be considered.

Projects must demonstrate “innovative approaches, clear commercialisation applications, pathways and implementation timeframes” and run for no more than 12 months.

The projects value can be between $100,000 and $3 million in any financial year, and the amount will be matched by AustCyber.

Those submitting expressions of interest – the window for which closes on Friday 12 July – will be invited to pitch their project proposal to a panel of experts including AustCyber, independent industry representatives and technical experts.

Successful projects will then be invited to make a full project application.

“Australia’s cyber security industry is continually growing and this funding will further boost our ability to become a global leader in the field, creating more Australian jobs while also making the nation more cyber resilient,” said Minister for Industry, Science and Technology Karen Andrews.

“This funding will assist the cyber security industry to upskill and expand the sector, and harness the enormous opportunities available to Australia,” she added.

Previous funded projects include Cog Systems, Forticode, Laava ID, WithYouWithMe, Fifth Domain, Deception.ai, Cybermerc, the University of Sydney, QuadIQ and Vault Systems.

Over the next 10 years, the size of Australia’s cyber security sector could potentially triple, reaching annual revenue of $6 billion by 2026 — up from around $2 billion — according to AustCyber.

“The growing demand for cyber security products and services provides a significant economic opportunity for Australia. Australia's growth prospects are sizeable if it succeeds in focusing on the unique strengths and advantages it possesses in cyber security. This is true even though the domestic cyber security sector is still in its infancy and the Australian market has so far been dominated by foreign players,” AustCyber wrote in the 2017 Competitiveness Plan.