AFP is looking to be 'more aggressive' with new cyber offense arm

Image: ACT Policing

The Australian Federal Police is conducting an internal review to implement a new cyber offensive arm, AFP commissioner Reece Kershaw said at Senate Estimates on Monday morning.

“At the moment, we’re actually going through an internal review of how we can be more aggressive in cyber, and it may mean a mini restructure internally for us to really have what we would call a cyber offensive operation of the AFP, which would actually conduct disruption operations on these individuals,” he said

Kershaw said this process has included talking with the Five Eyes alliance about the growth of cyberthreats. Kershaw is currently the chair of Five Eyes’ law enforcement group.

Throughout his testimony at Senate Estimates, Kershaw explained that the powers given to the AFP through the Surveillance Legislation Amendment (Identify and Disrupt) Act 2021, which passed earlier this year, would allow its cyber offensive capabilities to increase across various fronts, from countering child abuse, to spam, to terrorism.

“So [spam is] something we’re looking forward to using those new powers to, you know, it is my personal pet hate. I get multiple ones a day,” Kershaw said.

Through the new laws, the AFP and the Australian

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