Defence launches new data strategy

By Dylan Bushell-Embling
Friday, 06 August, 2021

Defence launches new data strategy

The Department of Defence has launched a new Defence Data Strategy aimed at guiding data management and improving data literacy across the ADF.

The new strategy, developed as part of the Defence Transformation Strategy, will seek to prepare the Defence organisation for a future in which cyber warfare will play an increasing role in military operations.

Releasing the strategy, Assistant Minister for Defence Andrew Hastie said expanding use of cyber warfare, grey zone tactics, and the willingness by some countries and non-state actors to use hostile cyber activities are already degrading Australia’s strategic environment.

“These cyber activities will compromise military capability and operations if we fail to act. They can also drive disinformation, weaken critical infrastructure, and destabilise political and social systems. They are a reality that we cannot ignore,” he said.

“Whether we like it or not, we are joined in an online contest to preserve our digital sovereignty as a country. Therefore lifting Defence’s data maturity across the organisation will position us to achieve a strategic advantage over our adversaries.”

The strategy has a focus on ensuring the data Defence relies on for its targeting and combat systems, satellites sensors and weapons is trustworthy, and that the ADF has the ability to securely share critical mission and intelligence data with trusted partners and allies, Hastie said.

The strategy has been built across five pillars — Govern, Trust, Discover, Use, Share — to ensure Defence takes a disciplined approach to data management across the entire organisation.

Specific initiatives include the appointment of a Chief Data Integration Officer, the establishment of a dedicated data division and the development of training programs across Defence career pathways.

The strategy lays out a vision for Defence data in 2023 that ensures that data driven insights become an embedded part of operations, that data assets can be rated across gold, silver and bronze standards, and that information is delivered in the form of dashboards and visualisations, among other targets.

“We cannot be complacent about data. I know the Government is not complacent. And I am confident that Defence is taking the right steps to meet our digital future,” Hastie concluded.

Image credit: ©

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