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Australia awarded A$1.3 million contract for next generation secure wireless devices

Australia awarded A$1.3 million contract for next generation secure wireless devices

Recently,
Minister for Defence Industry, the Hon Christopher Pyne MP, congratulated
Canberra cyber security company Penten on being awarded a A$1.3 million
innovation contract to develop their AltoCrypt technology for use by the
Australian Army.

Currently,
access to classified information is limited to hard wired computer systems or
paper-based distribution. Under the contract, cybersecurity company Penten will
deliver secure wireless devices to counter new cyber threats and streamline
information in deployed headquarters of the Australian Defence Force (ADF).

The secure
wireless device by Penten, AltoCrypt Stik, is an all-in-one deployable high-grade
solution that enables secure mobile access to government networks. It allows
highly secure access to classified information over WiFi, improving the speed
and currency of information, reducing the cost of cabling whilst elevating the
protection against modern cyber threats.

According
to the official website of AltoCrypt, AltoCrypt
Stik is highly portable, easy to use, and secure. It is a pocket-sized USB
device with military grade encryption software under the UK PRIME standard for
High Grade government encryption.

This
remote access technology provides ADF staff with greater flexibility and faster
response times, without risking data security. The A$1.3-million project will change
the way governments access and store classified information, enabling mobility
and facilitating the move away from paper to electronic distribution and
storage.

The
development of these advanced communication technology devices will increase
agility, reduce complexity and enable better decisions by ADF commanders and
their staff in a tactical environment.

“Initial
trials will test how this technology could be used with our coalition partners,
with a view to increasing the classification in the future,” said Minister
Pyne.

This
project was selected as part of the new Special Notice platform trialled by the
Defence Innovation Hub, which allows Defence capability managers to call for
industry and research organisations to submit proposals in response to specific
capability challenges.

Minister
Pyne said he was pleased to see the Defence Innovation Hub, the Australian Army
and our local industry partners working together to develop innovative
solutions to enhance Defence capability.

“This
activity is part of a broader program of work being carried out by the Army’s
Land Network Integration Centre to investigate technologies that enable the
faster deployment of tactical headquarters,” he added.

Australian
Government’s focus on promoting Australian defence industry and growing the
cyber industry through AustCyber has benefitted innovative technology businesses
of all sizes in the industry.

"Programs
like the Defence Innovation Hub help a small business like Penten accelerate
our technology application to the battlefield and brings forward the capability
advantage to the Australian Army" said CEO of Penten Mr Matthew Wilson.

Launched in April 2017, Penten’s
AltoCrypt Stik is the result of collaborative development with UK cyber partner
Amiosec with the support of both the UK and the Australian Governments.

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