Internet reform on cards
The Turnbull Government is considering changes to legislation that would give internet service providers greater leeway to block ISP addresses in the wake of this week’s unprecedented ransomware attack.
Minister assisting the Prime Minister on Cyber Security Dan Tehan said the attacks underlined the pressing need to review the rules on how big telcos such as Telstra and iiNet can move to block suspect web addresses.
“The Government and the telecommunications companies, and the ISP sector, have to work very closely to ensure we are doing everything we can to protect small business and the community,” Mr Tehan said.
The West Australian understands existing rules around what kind of direct action internet service providers can take without government direction to block ISPs is something of a grey area.
The Government is looking to encourage providers to better market their improvements in cyber security as part of their overall phone and internet packages.
At least a dozen Australian business have been hit by the malicious WannaCry computer bug, which blocks access to a firm’s data until it has paid a ransom. The bug has claimed hundreds of thousands of victims worldwide since Friday.
Northern Territory police yesterday revealed four private businesses in Darwin and Alice Springs had felt “significant impact”, but it is not known where else in the country businesses have been affected.
While Australian security agencies were yesterday aware of reports that the bug may have origins in North Korea, it is understood local investigators have found nothing to link the virus to that country.
Lord Mayor Lisa Scaffidi. Federal Minister Dan Tehan.