SCP - Chapter 4 - The role of AustCyber

AustCyber's mission is to grow a vibrant and globally competitive cyber security sector that enhances Australia's future economic growth

As part of this mission, AustCyber aims to be an independent national body that improves the alignment of disparate cyber security initiatives and investments across industry, the research community, academia and government.

AustCyber is part of the Australian Government's A$250 million Industry Growth Centres Initiative, which aims to tap new sources of economic growth by maximising the country's competitive advantage in six knowledge-driven, high-value sectors.

AustCyber has been leading significant efforts to accelerate and sustain Australia's cyber security sector, including vital activities to counter the challenges highlighted in Chapter 3.

AustCyber is contributing to the sector's strategic goals for growth by 2023 by promoting research, innovation and commercialisation; establishing robust export pathways for Australian capabilities; and implementing a national platform for skills development and workforce growth.

AustCyber's support for the cyber security sector includes:

  • undertaking 28 industry-led research and commercialisation projects funded through the $15 million AustCyber Projects Fund, contributing close to $35 million to the economy;
  • establishing a National Network of Nodes across states and territories;
  • providing startups with resources and connections;
  • promoting Australian cyber security providers through missions to the US, UK, Israel, Singapore and Indonesia;
  • nationally coordinating the development of a standard TAFE cyber security curriculum that has been introduced across Australia;
  • introducing education programs that target schools, higher education institutions, accelerators and business directors;
  • partnering with industry and government to identify, lead and implement policy changes that strengthen the regulatory framework for the sector;
  • hosting Australian Cyber Week annually to showcase the ecosystem; and
  • establishing the National Missing Persons Hackathon in collaboration with the Australian Federal Police and TraceLabs (Canada).

Industry-led collaborations under AustCyber's Projects Fund delivered significant impact towards education, research and the commercialisation of cyber security

Industry-led collaborations under AustCyber’s Projects Fund

Examples of projects funded

Fund Recipient

Forticode Cybermerc University of Sydney

Funding amount

Industry funding: $1,285,450

AustCyber funding: $1,285,450

Industry funding: $1,220,000

AustCyber funding: $1,220,000

Industry funding: $618,464

AustCyber funding: $611,971


Product development

Product development



Forticode was awarded a project to the value of $2,570,900 to leverage their Cipherise™ trusted identify platform which provides technology to support singular, personally-held digital identities, stored and managed on mobile devices. The project will create a highly scalable cryptographic based technology that can interface with both the physical and virtual worlds; allow for independent authentication of personal data and bi-directional communication to confirm intent, and; utilises quantum tolerant technologies and techniques.

Cybermerc have been awarded a project to the value of $2,440,000 to establish a national threat sharing portal, AUSHIELD DEFEND, to collect and share data of new cyber attacks targeting Australian businesses. Enterprise and research partners can now use AUSHIELD DEFEND to test and develop next generation defensive cyber strategies.

The University of Sydney was awarded a project to the value of $1,230,435 to deliver, with Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Limited (ANZ), Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA), National Australia Bank Limited (NAB), Westpac Banking Corporation and British Telecom, cyber security challenges for high school students that develop cyber security skills and attitudes, and increase careers awareness.

Funding the future of digital identity management

AustCyber's Projects Fund grant recipient truuth has been developing a digital identity platform for user identity verification, while protecting user privacy.

truuth uses technology that fragments, salts (injects false information), encrypts and shards user credentials across multiple trusted servers. The platform delivers a wide range of micro-services that improve online safety and eliminate the need to remember many different passwords, whilst ensuring no single entity has access to a user's biometric data. The truuth platform is being deployed for enterprise customers including Macquarie Bank, NuMobile and Australian Finance Group (AFG).

"Most venture capital funds are focused on scale-ups that already have enterprise customers, while private equity is typically looking to invest A$5-10 million in Series A rounds," said Mike Simpson, CEO & Co-founder of truuth. "AustCyber complements these by supporting early stage companies with highly innovative technology solutions."

The truuth suite of digital identity and authentication services addresses deficiencies of current solutions such as reliance on insecure passwords. It also provides enterprises with higher levels of user authentication by using Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) models to verify the user is present during the authentication event.

AustCyber funding support has been integral to the success of truuth.

"The Projects Fund enabled us to match funding from private investors to grow the team more rapidly and deliver our digital identity services far earlier," said Mr Simpson. "truuth's successes over the past 12 months would not have been possible without the assistance of AustCyber. Our participation in AustCyber forums has also opened up commercial conversations in the public and private sectors."

The company provides a range of digital identity services including truuth KYC (Know-Your-Customer), truuth liveness, truuth faceKey and truuth biopass. These services help to safeguard against the recent and rapid rise in 'deep fake' identities created by artificial intelligence and machine learning algorithms which are exacerbating fraud risks.

Recent estimates by the Attorney-General's Department indicate that identity crime costs Australia upwards of $1.6 billion each year, with the majority lost by individuals through credit card fraud, identity theft and scams.1


  1. AustCyber (2020), trUUth: A next generation solution for digital identity and cyber security. Available at: