Digital Security — what does it really mean?

Salman Ahmed, Ladoo’s Systems Engineer and IT Specialist

As a digital agency, we work closely with organisations that are dealing with the challenge of digital security when creating solutions. Government agencies are legally responsible for the data they store, capture and process (including business communication on social media) and they have unique needs when it comes to managing digital security.

Australian Digital Transformation Agency Chief Gavin Slater recently gave his first speech as CEO and despite discussing many new initiatives was criticised by the media for not mentioning the public concerns about privacy and security. Salman Ahmed, Ladoo’s Systems Engineer and IT Specialist, deals with digital security challenges daily and we asked him what his take was on this publicly sensitive topic.

“The reality is that government needs to innovate digitally and in a lot of ways they are doing that. The challenge for these agencies is the way they communicate about security is based on a traditional and physical understanding of security — not digital.

An army or a police force is physical and they work in coordinated ways to protect the public from threats. Online, the landscape is different. We’re not talking about a human barrier here, we’re talking about code and that makes it really challenging to understand and communicate what risk and security looks like for the public”.

This means having a more well-rounded understanding of what it means to be secure online and also educating the public about how they can protect their own data.

“A common problem is that people create weak passwords and when their accounts are compromised they direct their frustration to platforms, rather than consider their own responsibility to create a strong password”.

Salman also believes that organisations need to have more robust conversations when things go wrong. “If there is a problem, organisations need to move swiftly to resolve the issue and to alert users that there may be a concern. This is difficult for government organisations due to internal processes; where possible I’d advise that agencies communicate that they are working to resolve the issue and provide a place where affected users can contact the organisation”.

Have a security question you’d like to ask the Ladoo team? Get in touch.

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