Chapter five: Keeping Australia and Australians safe, secure and free

While Australia will remain one of the safest countries in the world, we nonetheless face a diverse range of risks that will threaten our security, our freedom and our values.

Technological change, the reach and vulnerabilities of the internet, state fragility, military modernisation and environmental stresses are all factors likely to amplify threats to our people, borders, economy and physical assets in the decade ahead.

The threat to Australia from Islamist terrorism and violent extremism will remain high and could worsen. We face a range of sophisticated cyber threats. Some ‘push factors’ could revitalise attempts at people smuggling to Australia on a large scale. We face challenges in dealing with attempts to interfere in the independence and sovereignty of Australian decision-making. Crime will continue to emanate from beyond our borders and will grow in complexity.

The Government is resolutely committed to meeting these challenges. Ensuring the safety and security of Australians is our most fundamental responsibility and highest priority. National security is the foundation on which our freedoms have been built and maintained.

The Government’s reforms to Australia’s domestic security and national intelligence arrangements reflect this commitment. In the decade ahead, Australia will need to continue building strong defences and resilient communities at home. We will take determined action internationally, in partnership with others and on our own as necessary, to disrupt and defeat these threats.