Page 34 - Australian Defence Magazine November 2019
P. 34

“We need to be mindful of the Defence experience, in that piecemeal decisions focussed on components of our national infrastructure will not be sufficient.”
threat such as weaponised swarming drones? Or do they just dial 000 and wait for help?
Technical solutions to a range of identi- fied future threats are being developed. If we consider the potential scale and impact of emerging commercial platform-based threats, then it is not a threat that can be merely assigned as a Defence responsibil- ity. It is a bit akin to looking at threats to our Maritime Trade and expecting that the Navy will be capable of addressing the full breadth of the task; it is not.
Given the observed lag in the develop- ment of integrating information archi- tectures and systems in Defence and the potential detrimental effect on operational capability, it is not unreasonable to assume thatwemayalsobeatriskfromalackofa wider national information infrastructure
when we attempt to deal with future threats. Logic and international experience from the Internet of Things (IoT) tells us we should address the information architecture first, as per our iPhone example, in order to provide a foundation on which future na-
tional response systems can be integrated. In the case of critical infrastructure, we are suggesting that a national IME would support sharing of relevant situational awareness, sensor and threat data to a wider group of potential responders. Is this sug- gestion mere fantasy or is there an example of such thinking overseas, given our current propensity to be a fast follower rather than
an innovation leader?
The Finnish Government, for example,
recognises that in recent years, threats in- volving the increased use of technology and
networking in society and the economy have been growing and that the vulnerabil- ity of the technical infrastructure of society has increased.
Information and communications sys- tems vital to the functioning of society must be secured through national measures. Pub- lic authorities must have at their disposal computer systems that meet the demands of exceptional threat-based circumstances.
Another example is the Swedish national digital communications system used by the emergency services and others in the fields of civil protection, public safety and security, emergency medical services and healthcare. There are around 70,000 users on the net- work, and it helps provide security for 10 million people.
What should such national systems look like in the next decade? How will industry, for example, be integrated where and when needed?
A National Integrated IME
In our November 2018 ADM article we noted that the current stove-piped model of Defence networks creates bottlenecks for the passage of essential, time-critical information and also constrains the pas-
Systems vital to society must be secured on a national level.
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