Government urges political parties to ‘keep themselves secure’ ahead of cyber security briefing


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The Federal Government is urging Australia’s political parties to steel themselves against potential foreign cyber attacks.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull will today announce a cyber security briefing for political parties to be held in Canberra early next month.

Assistant Minister for Cyber Security Dan Tehan said the Government had been shocked by a United States intelligence report claiming Russia ordered a hidden campaign to influence the US presidential election.

The report said Russia’s actions included hacking into the email accounts of the Democratic National Committee and individual Democrats.

Mr Tehan said Australia’s political parties must be vigilant.

“We’re heading into a new election cycle, we’ve got two state elections coming up this year,” he said.

Mr Tehan said the Prime Minister’s special adviser on cyber and the Australian Cyber Security Centre would outline potential dangers at the briefing.

He said there was no suggestion that Australia’s democratic institutions had already been breached.

“But that doesn’t mean we don’t have to make sure that all our political parties have the correct processes and procedures in place to keep themselves secure,” he said.

“Australian democracy is something that we have to preserve, it’s something that we have to cherish, it’s something that we have to protect.”

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