NetAlert funding slashed in Labor bugdet cuts

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The Labor government has cut funding to NetAlert, the previous government's home and public library free filtering scheme.

Federal Minister for Finance and Deregulation, Senator Lindsay Tanner told the National Press Club in Canberra that Labor inherited a problem from the former Liberal Government.

Cuts to technology related spending, include marketing dollars for the NetAlert program, amount to $30 million.

According to Tanner, $6.4 million will be slashed from the NetAlert program's education, and advertising budget. The initial cost of NetAlert, announced by the Coalition government in August last year, was $187 million. While $84 million was spent on filtering technology, $22 million was allocated to an awareness scheme to inform parents.

Phillip Allen, research manager, vertical markets at IDC Australia said broadly the investment in technology by the Australian government remains robust.

“While these [federal funding] cuts are not going to dramatically affect the IT industry. Security is important however I don't think that the spending cuts we are talking about are going to have a huge impact,” said Allen.

IDC forecasted that the total Government spending will be more than $6 billion on ICT.

Other IT cuts include $6.7 million from the Telecommunications Improvement and Procurement project, and 5 million each from the Innovation Ambassador program and the establishment of the APAC Network for Energy Technology program.

Furthermore, Labor will axe $643 million promised by the former government, affecting environmental, cultural, communications and technology initiatives.

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