Key cyber and privacy issues facing Australian businesses

Hall & Wilcox partners Eden Winokur and Alison Baker discuss the key cyber and privacy issues facing Australian businesses. Cybercrime and data breach incidents are on the rise, with ransomware having a devastating impact on affected businesses. With so much of our lives conducted online, protecting people’s personal information has never been more important.

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Eden Winokur and Alison Baker


Cyber crime is on the rise. In 2021, there was around a 50% increase in cyber crime and data breach incidents.


As a result of the covid pandemic all of us have used technology so much more than we previously had. With everybody working online it also meant that cyber criminals were opportunistic and we saw an increase in data breaches during that time.

A key issue is that we are very used to now doing everything from a technology perspective, and so protecting people’s personal information and for organisations to make sure they have all the right systems and processes in place to protect information is really a key issue.


The key risk right now affecting Australian businesses is ransomware and business email compromise. Ransomware is causing a devastating impact to a wide range of businesses across the country.

Other trends include an increased risk for directors and boards due to cyber activity.

So I expect that there will be an increase in cyber related litigation and regulatory investigations


Ensuring that you properly train your staff about protecting personal information, supplying your staff with technological devices so that they don’t use their own devices and just making sure you’re continually assessing your systems to make sure they haven’t been compromised is really important.


The cyber practice is really broken up into two areas. One is a proactive advisory service, and the other is a reactive service that we provide when an incident occurs. With proactive services, we're working with companies and boards on how to prepare for a cyber incident and assisting them mitigate the various risks that exist. Our reactive practice is really about helping companies. We hold our client’s hand through the entire process and assist them in responding to an incident. Our team has collectively worked on hundreds of cyber matters, including some of the largest breaches that we've seen in Australia, and we utilise our network of experts to provide clients with the advice that they need to manage the incident.


Eden Winokur

Eden Winokur

Partner & Head of Cyber

Eden is a leading cyber, privacy, disputes and insurance lawyer who heads the Hall & Wilcox cyber practice.

Alison Baker

Alison has more than 20 years’ experience in a wide-ranging employment and privacy practice.

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