Commonwealth countries must unite if they are to tackle the growing threat of cyber crime, according to Federal Attorney-General Robert McClelland.
Speaking yesterday (13 July) at the Commonwealth Law Ministers Meeting (CLMM) in Sydney, McClelland and Minister for Home Affairs Brendan O'Connor discussed Australia's experience in combating cyber crime with First Law Officers from across the Commonwealth.
As part of the discussion, the Australian Federal Police (AFP) provided an update to the cyber threat faced by Commonwealth nations, and delegates received a briefing from cyber crime expert associate professor Dr Jonathan Clough about the threat posed by cyber crime to national security and law enforcement.
"Cyber crime is a global problem which no single country can tackle alone," McClelland said. "Greater opportunities for countries to share experiences and foster better international cooperation are invaluable.
McClelland and O'Connor were joined in a discussion panel by law ministers from Canada and Botswana. The panel discussed a range of topics, including the intersection of cyber crime and the national security agenda.
"Australia has been involved in many initiatives as part of the global response to cyber crime and I was pleased to share our experiences with our international colleagues," O'Connor said.
"The Australian Federal Police estimate that cyber crime costs Australia well in excess of $1 billion a year and billions more is lost in countries across the world, but through international co-operation we can reduce cyber threats.
"We all face similar challenges in combating cyber crime and there's a lot to be learned from the experience of others, in legal frameworks, education initiatives or technical solutions."
More than 40 countries have representatives at the CLMM, which provides an opportunity for discussion on legal issues of common concern across the Commonwealth.