Professor Willy Susilo in a stoic pose

Cybersecurity: a threat too big to ignore

Cybersecurity: a threat too big to ignore

UOW will host an online seminar to generate awareness about the Australian cybersecurity industry and showcase innovation and expertise

Coinciding with Australian Cyber Week (25-29 October), the University of Wollongong (UOW) will hold an online seminar on the Australian cybersecurity industry, “Cybersecurity – a real and challenging threat”, taking place on Wednesday, 27 October 2021, at 4 pm.

According to Australia’s cybersecurity agency, the ACSC, there has been a 60 per cent increase in ransomware attacks against Australian entities since last year. On top of that, 2020 broke all records regarding data lost in breaches and the number of cyber-attacks on companies, governments and individuals.

“The main problem is that – day by day – we rely more on online storage such as the cloud. This increases the risk of data breaches,” said Distinguished Professor Willy Susilo, Director of UOW’s Institute of Cybersecurity and Cryptology and one of the leading speakers at the seminar.

Professor Susilo is an internationally recognised research leader and expert in post-quantum cryptography and cybersecurity. He has published more than 500 research papers on cryptography and network security, and has actively engaged with the industry and the research community to improve Australia’s cybersecurity capabilities.

As UOW’s expert explained, cybersecurity is a challenging problem with many risk factors at play, ranging from legislation, technology to the human aspect.

“While cybersecurity is possible to a certain extent, especially from the technological perspective, it does rely on users doing the right thing. In fact, many consider humans to be the weakest link in cybersecurity. Hence, more work should focus on designing techniques that safeguard against users doing the wrong thing while requiring minimal human intervention,” Professor Susilo advised.

UOW Vice-Chancellor, Professor Patricia M. Davidson and The Hon. Victor Dominello MP, Minister for Customer Service and Minister for Digital, will open the seminar.

“At UOW, we conduct cybersecurity activities in both teaching and research to provide state-of-the-art information to the research community, industry and the general public,” Professor Davidson said.

 “Our overarching purpose is to produce highly-skilled job-ready graduates that are equipped to handle current and future cybersecurity challenges and to develop innovative, leading-edge cybersecurity solutions to meet the needs of industry.”

The seminar will also feature information technology experts from UOW and external industry leaders.

Dr Yannan Li, Associate Research Fellow, School of Computing and Information Technology, UOW

Fiona Rankin, Director, Information Management & Technology Services, UOW

Philippa Cogswell, Partner, Cybersecurity & Digital Trust, PwC

Professor Rob McLaughlin, Australian National Centre for Ocean Resources and Security (ANCORS)



The seminar is free and open to everyone. It will take place on Wednesday, 27 October 2021, at 4 pm and will be delivered via Zoom. Registration is required here.