Qld budget sinks $85 million into digital services, cyber security

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Qld budget sinks $85 million into digital services, cyber security

Under 'responsive government' initiative.

The Queensland government has earmarked more than $85 million in its 2019-20 state budget to improve digital services and safeguard government systems over the next four years.

The funding pool, revealed in the budget on Tuesday, will be used by the Department of Housing and Public Works for a series of 'responsive government' initiatives.

It is the first major investment in front-facing digital services and cyber security since the establishment of a dedicated infosec capability within government back in 2016.

The funding largely falls to digital services improvements, with $65.5 million allocated to “enhance digital technology and service design capabilities to make services better” over four years.

This will be split between improving the government’s online service channels ($33.3 million) and developing a single sign-on capability for customers to access services online ($32.2 million).

On the cyber security front, just over $20 million has been provided for the state’s cyber security protection unit to continue operating over the next four years.

This is $7.5 million more than the cyber security unit received when it was established within the government’s chief information office three years ago.

The government is also planning a rethink of data centre services, with $15 million allocated to “support the delivery of a new, secure model of data centre service delivery for Queensland government agencies”.

Elsewhere in the budget, Queensland Health will receive an $80 million capital injection for IT infrastructure upgrades under it’s ‘’infrastructure maintenance program’.

The government will also provide $4.2 million to the Legislative Assembly of Queensland to rollout new software and IT infrastructure at electorate office’s across the state over the next four years.

The IT upgrade is expected to deliver “improved data service performance and reliability, data security, mobility and business tools” that will allow members and electorate staff better perform their duties.

Other measures funded in the budget for 2019-20 include:

  • $51.1 million for the already announced rebuild of the state’s child safety IT system
  • $17.1 million to continue the government’s shark control program, which will include trialling drones and other emerging tech
  • $9.9 million for the Department of Justice and Attorney-General to implement its IT strategy over the next four years. The government will also provide additional funding of $38 million over two years, which will be held centrally
  • $3.5 million for a state-wide anti-cyberbullying public awareness and education campaign
  • following the recommendations of the Queensland Anti-Cyberbullying Taskforce
  • $2.3 million each for the education and employment departments to implement a digital engagement strategy
  • $0.25 million for the Department of Justice and Attorney-General to develop a grants management
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