The UK and Australia have agreed to develop a “network of liberty” to combat malign cyber actors.
Western alliances are being renewed in the face of increasing aggression from countries like Russia and China. Few alliances have as much history as the one between the UK and Australia.
“Britain and Australia share one of the oldest and strongest defence and security alliances,” said UK Defence Secretary Ben Wallace.
“Operating and exercising side by side, we continue to work together to promote stability and tackle our shared threats with our like-minded ally, head-on.”
Today, British and Australian ministers concluded the first Australia UK Foreign and Defence Ministerial meetings (AUKMIN) since the COVID-19 pandemic began.
“With the world facing increasing aggression from malign actors, it is vital that the UK strengthens and deepens our partnerships with our closest allies,” explained UK Foreign Secretary Liz Truss.
“Today, we have committed to new and enhanced opportunities to collaborate with Australia in areas including maritime security, counterterrorism, misinformation, cyber and technology.”
Truss established a ‘Cyber and Critical Technology Partnership’ with Australia’s Foreign Minister Marise Payne. The agreement is designed to strengthen global technology supply chains, promote the UK’s positive technology vision, and tackle malign actors who disrupt cyber-space.
“In the battlegrounds of the future, cutting-edge technologies will be crucial in the fight against malign cyber actors who threaten our peace and security,” said Truss.
“That’s why today, the UK and Australia have agreed a new cyber and technology partnership to ensure that liberal democracies shape the technology rules of tomorrow.”
Part of the agreement is to support the development of a “network of liberty” that aims to deter cyberattacks before they happen and call out malign actors who perpetrate the acts.
Further details are thin on the ground at this point but the duo claim they’ll “increase deterrence by raising the costs for hostile state activity in cyberspace – including through strategic co-ordination of our cyber sanctions regimes.”
The announcement comes off the back of the historic AUKUS defence partnership between the UK, Australia, and the US. AUKUS focuses on growing and sharing expertise in “cyber capabilities, artificial intelligence, quantum technologies, and additional undersea capabilities.”
“As champions of freedom and democracy, the UK and Australia are hard-headed in defending our values and challenging unfair practices and malign acts,” concludes Truss.
(Image Credit: No10 Downing Street under Open Government Licence)
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