Parliament hunts for its next CISO

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Parliament hunts for its next CISO

Search begins 10 months after role was vacated.

The Department of Parliamentary Services has begun searching for a new chief information security officer following the departure of its cyber security assistant secretary last year.

The department put out the call for a “highly motivated, outcome-driven senior executive” to fill the vacancy last week.

According to LinkedIn, former CISO Ian McKenzie left the role after 18 months in October 2020 to take up a position outside of DPS.

A spokesperson for DPS would only say that McKenzie now “works for another Commonwealth agency”.

In his five years at the department, McKenzie was also chief technology officer – at a time when the role was combined with the CISO role – and also did a stint as acting chief information officer.

DPS created a new cyber security assistant secretary role in February 2019, which the spokesperson said was “consistent with an increased priority for cyber security resilience”.

It followed a cyber attack against the parliamentary computing network that saw a limited amount of non-confidential data stolen by a state-sponsored actor.

The new CISO will lead DPS’ “small and highly specialised” cyber security branch, which provides strategic-level cyber security guidance and ensures compliance with policies and other regulations.

The branch consists of 25 staff working across ops, network and identity systems, capability development and delivery, and governance, risk and compliance.

According to the job ad, the senior executive service (SES) band one leader will provide expert technical advice across the department and “stay abreast of the changing technology landscape”.

“While the role will primarily focus on cyber security, it is expected that you will work across [DPS], playing a critical leadership role in embedding cyber security support to all services,” the ad states.

The CISO will also need to work “closely with the Australia Cyber Security Centre and international partners” and allocate “resources to facilitate efficacy and efficiency”.

Since McKenzie left last year, the department has also lost its chief information officer Anthony Stinziani to the ACT’s Chief Minister, Treasury and Economic Development Directorate (CMTEDD).

Stinziani, who spent three years at DPS, has become the executive group manager of the CMTEDD’s digital, data and technology solutions group under chief digital officer Bettina Konti.

DPS’ information services division is currently being led by acting CIO Con Sfyris.

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