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Defence needs its own app store: ADF CIO

Tim Lohman | March 22, 2012
The Australian Defence Force will seek to create its own Apple-like app store as a means to more quickly deliver applications and capabilities to service and support personnel.

"That is the environment people expect and you cannot stop them using it. They are doing it at home so they will do it at work."

Farr said he did anticipate some push back from within Defence to the idea, largely around the issue of IT security. However, he said that while security was valid concern, risk had to be balanced against business reward.

"I think security is sometimes overblown a bit. We take a purist view without actually doing a business-benefit-security trade-off. People, rightly, get nervous around ICT security, but people used to steal letters out of letter boxes on the past that didn't stop us using the post.

"We need to accept that the threats are very real, but we also need people who can make informed trade-offs decisions: yes, that is a risk but look at the benefits, so yes I will take that risk."

The issue of security threats to Australia's defence has been a focus for the Federal Government of late with the Gillard Government unveiling a cyber security competition earlier this month aimed at enticing ICT university students into the information security industry.

The Cyber Defence University Challenge is designed to test the problem-solving skills of teams of Australian undergraduates in a virtual computer network scenario. It will run for 24 hours from the 3 to 4 April 2012.

In January Australia was ranked third behind the UK and US and ahead of 17 other G-20 nations for its ability to withstand cyber attacks and to deploy the digital infrastructure needed for a productive and secure economy.


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