Type of Cyber Experts that are growing in demand in Australia

In times of a global pandemic, the digital world supports us tremendously by keeping the world connected whilst we practice social distancing.

However, what has been overlooked is the increasing online threats that suggest economies are not ready to go completely digital. Cybersecurity remains a critical enabler for digitalisation, and strategies will be needed to prioritize the protection of our cyberspace.

We spoke to Rachael Mayne, Senior Recruitment Consultant who is a specialist in this space to share with us what cyber talent need to look out for today.


Increasing cases of fraudulent hacks, scams and privacy issues in Australia

Reported by the Australian Government, there has been a significant increase in COVID-19 themed malicious cyber activity across Australia since early March 2020. The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission’s (ACCC) Scamwatch has received more than 100 reports of scams about COVID-19 in the last three months, and the volumes continue to rise. Between 10 and 26 March, the Australian Cyber Security Centre (ACSC) also received over 45 cybercrime and cyber security incident reports from individuals and businesses, all related to COVID-19 themed scam and phishing activity. Cybercrime is now believed to cost Australia's economy more than $1 billion a year, with small businesses accounting for 43 per cent of all targets.

  • Remote Working attacks

Cybercriminals are also developing a range of scams targeting an increasing number of Australians that are working from home. The ACSC has been made aware of an overseas scam that invites people to support a ‘Coronavirus Relief Fund’ as a casual employee or volunteer. Applicants are told they will be assisting with processing ‘donations’ intended for COVID-19 support services. In reality, individuals who are caught up in this scam unwittingly become money-mules for the cybercrime syndicates, transferring proceeds of crime into untraceable crypto-currency.

  • Cryptocurrency attacks

While cash is still ‘king’, digital currencies are fast becoming the preferred choice for organised criminal networks involved in money laundering, funding terrorism, and cybercrimes. In mid-May, a case was reported in Sydney on an unlawful online money laundering syndicate exchanging cash for cryptocurrency. It was also noted that the offender had transacted Bitcoin valued at more than AUD5 million since 2017.

  • Technology risks

Almost one in two Australian workers are putting their company at risk of a cyberattack by opening emails and clicking links from unknown senders, downloading software and watching suspicious videos.

The research comes as cyber security experts warn about the escalating threat of companies being held to ransom, with tech giant Toll Group battling a major ransomware attack which has forced the company to shut down its IT systems.


Government initiatives in Australia

The ACSC has produced advice to help critical infrastructure providers protect themselves from cyberattack as their key staff work remotely during the COVID-19 pandemic.

"Securing Australia's critical infrastructure, and systems that control our essential services, is a major priority for the Australian Cyber Security Centre and our partners in the sector," said ACSC Head, Abigail Bradshaw CSC. Also released is a guidance COVID-19 – Remote Access to Operational Technology Environments that outlines general cyber security practices for remote working, as well as specific advice for infrastructure operations.

Contractors, both in Australia and overseas, have reported significant increases in malicious cyber activity against their systems and are priority targets for attacks. As such, guidelines and best practices are also listed here on their website to mitigate or reduce a potentially dangerous attack or hack.

To ensure that the proper infrastructure and system is kept in check, experts within cybersecurity will continue to be in demand.

Greater demand for cyber roles

Our Progressive team specialising within cyber security have noted that the demand for roles will include the following:

  1. Privacy specialists
  2. Risk Analysts / Consultants
  3. Security Network Architects
  4. Government, Risk and Compliance (GRC) Consultants
  5. Incident Response Engineers/ Analysts
  6. Security Operations Center (SOC) Analysts

This is based on the trends mentioned above and requirements Progressive has been receiving.

As individuals, you can also play your part to ensure your privacy and security is not compromised during this period.  Our Progressive team has a few tips to help you tackle the following scams and threats.

Email phishing scams

  • Check whether the alleged sender is actually the sender. Sometimes there are multiple email addresses in the list of senders. If in doubt, you can reveal all the senders by selecting 'reply';
  • Don't open links and/or attachments from senders you don't know;
  • Do not send personal data to unknown senders;
  • If the email asks you to open an attachment or website, hover your mouse over the link to see if it leads to a web page;
  • If you arrive at a web page you don't trust via email, you can see in the browser's URL bar whether you've been redirected to another website;

WIFI hacks

  • Change the default password you use to connect;
  • Hide the network from others;
  • Do not share your password with people outside the household or close friends;
  • Regularly check if any unknown devices are connected to the network;
  • Be careful when downloading applications that provide unlikely information.


  • Use double authentication - such as Google Authenticator - provides an extra secure environment;
  • Create passwords with special characters, numbers and uppercase letters;
  • Long passwords are more difficult to retrieve using the brute force attacking tactic, so make sure the password has a minimum of characters to match;
  • Prevent the local storage of passwords.


Are you working within the cyber sector?

Are you an individual looking to enter the cyber sector, or is your firm looking for the right cyber talent? Contact us via the form below or view the latest job openings here.

Get in touch

Whether you’re a professional looking for a job or a business seeking highly skilled STEM talent, the team at Progressive is here for you.

The Importance of cybersecurity when working from home

09 Apr 2020

Cybersecurity is one of the most topical issues of our time. Now more than ever, it is vital to take measures to protect yourself and your business online.

Tags: APAC

Top 5 tips for successful virtual job interviews

03 Apr 2020

Preparing for a virtual job interview can bring with it uncertainty. We've put together 5 top tips to ensure you feel as prepared a s possible.

Tags: APAC

Top 5 questions you should prepare for an interview in Data & Analytics?

03 Sep 2020

Data and Analytics is a space that impacts industries the world over. With record-breaking investments and a growing data hub, it casts a positive outlook for investors who are beginning to recognise the potential of Australia’s ecosystem.

Global Government Assistance

24 Apr 2020

We know that every business is having to navigate new rules, advice and government support, often with differing regional, national and city-specific nuances. With that in mind, we've pulled together some information on the various government assistance programmes from across the world.

Tags: APAC