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Australia amends legislation following the Optus hack

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Australia amends legislation following the Optus hack: The Australian government changed its telecommunications legislation Thursday to safeguard vulnerable consumers following a cyberattack on the nation’s second-largest cellphone company.

The revisions to Telecommunications Regulations enable Optus and other providers to better work with financial institutions and governments to identify and mitigate cybersecurity problems, fraud, scams, and other hostile cyber activities.

“This is to limit the effect of the data leak on Optus customers and allow banking institutions to deploy improved measures and monitoring,” Rowland said. Over one-third of Australians had stolen personal data when Optus lost 9.8 million current and past customers’ details in a cyberattack detected on Sept. 21.

The hacker published 10,000 client details on the dark web last week to extort $1 million from Optus, a subsidiary of Singtel.

Optus printed full-page adverts Saturday with the title “We’re sorry.” The ad linked to an Optus website with tips on avoiding identity theft and fraud. Without Parliament, the government may amend rules.

In reaction to the Optus breach, the government wants to amend the Privacy Act in the last four weeks of 2022.

The amendments would enhance fines for corporations with deficient cybersecurity defenses and limit the amount and kind of consumer data organizations can collect and keep.

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