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Global threat sharing
26 May, 2021

New global partnership helps education sector defend against cyber attacks

Australia, Canada, UK and US collaborate on an automated platform to share intelligence on malware attacks

Sydney Australia, 26 May 2021 – A new cyber security threat intelligence sharing system has been launched to help research and education organisations across the globe prevent and mitigate cyber attacks.

In response to the rise in cyber crime against the sector, particularly ransomware attacks, AARNet, Australia’s Academic and Research Network has joined forces with tertiary education and research sector security and technology bodies in Canada, the UK and US to form a global threat intelligence sharing partnership.

The partnership uses MISP, the open-source threat intelligence platform used world-wide by more than 6,000 organisations.

Cyber crime does not respect international borders, and there are often strong similarities in the method of attacks seen in different countries. Using the MISP’s automated warning system, the partner organisations can inform each other of attacks in real time, increasing the likelihood that they can either put in effective preventative measures, or reduce the impact of attacks.

The formal partnership has been launched following the signing of a memorandum of understanding in April.

The founding partners in this collaboration are:

AARNet Chief Information Security Officer Charles Sterner says AARNet is strongly committed to efforts focused on securing Australia’s research and education sector.

“AARNet has been an active driver of security uplift initiatives for the research and education sector in recent years, spearheaded by the development of our security operations centre for Australian universities,” he said.

“We see AARNet playing a key role in creating opportunities for people and groups with common challenges, both in Australia and globally, to achieve far better outcomes by collaborating than they would alone. This threat sharing agreement goes to the core of that vision and creates a base for building much larger collaborations focused on securing the sector.”

The Australian government is supporting this collaboration through the AustCyber Projects Fund, a $15 million, three-year initiative designed to help the Australian cyber security industry grow both locally and globally. This funding is also providing AARNet with the opportunity to develop and strengthen sovereign security capabilities through partnerships with Australian entities aligned to threat sharing and other associated cyber activities.