A new cyber security node has officially launched in Townsville, helping to establish the city as a national cyber security leader as part of the city’s Smart Townsville strategy. 

Mayor Jenny Hill said the local node was part of a national network of cyber security innovation nodes and had been developed in a partnership between Townsville City Council and the Queensland and Australian Government.

“Cyber security is a high economic growth industry and having this node in Townsville will provide our local businesses the building blocks they need to secure their digital networks and improve their capabilities,” Ms Hill said.

“In Australia, the cyber security industry is worth around $16 billion and supports nearly 27,000 jobs. It’s important that we tap into this market as a growing economy that wants to be at the forefront of innovation and technology.

“With business being driven online by the conditions created by COVID-19, it’s important that our local businesses know how to protect themselves online – especially as the average number of cyber attacks increased by 33 per cent in 2020.”

Ms Hill said that the establishment of the node in Townsville is a key component in delivering the Smart Townsville strategy.

“The Smart Townsville strategy was designed as a way to support businesses today while creating the conditions for the business to thrive tomorrow,” Ms Hill said.

“Having this node located in our city, coupled with the North Queensland Regional Data Centre and Smart Precinct NQ will allow us to attract businesses to the region instead of them setting up shop in the capital cities in the south.”

The next step in building the cyber security industry in the north will be to establish training opportunities, organise forums and seminars and begin providing cyber security health checks for local businesses.

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