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16th Safeguarding Australia Summit 2019, QT Canberra

Wednesday, 8 May 2019 to Thursday, 9 May 2019 from 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM

QT Canberra, Canberra, Australia



Confronting and Countering the Threats from Espionage, Foreign Interference and Subversion


Click here to view registration costs


In 2019, Safeguarding Australia is back with a new focus - Confronting and countering the threats from Espionage, Foreign Interference and Subversion.

Across 8 and 9 May 2019, Safeguarding Australia will bring government and industry together to counter the threats facing all Australians. Safeguarding Australia will unite international and Australian experts to explore the issues in this space; considering the past, present and future of security response.

The Australian Security Intelligence Organisation (ASIO) has warned that espionage and political interference by foreign powers is at unprecedented levels in Australia and poses a major risk to security.

Duncan Lewis, the Director-General of ASIO, told a Senate estimates hearing that he was concerned about escalating activities.
“Hostile intelligence poses a real and potential existential threat to Australian security and sovereignty,” Mr Lewis said. “The harm from this threat may not manifest for many years, even decades, after the activities occur. We are concerned about threats from wherever they emanate.”

According to the Lowy Institute, foreign interference has not seeped into the Australian consciousness in the way terrorism has. In this year’s Lowy Institute poll, terrorism was cited as the No.1 “critical threat” facing Australians. Foreign interference ranked eighth – behind the US presidency of Donald Trump.

While the public has not recognised this growing threat, the Australian Parliament has. In June 2018, the Senate passed laws that amount to the most significant overhaul of Australia’s security and foreign interference laws in decades – creating new espionage offences, introducing tougher penalties on spies and establishing a register of foreign political agents.

Safeguarding Australia 2019 will focus on this and more, over one and a half days of plenary sessions, followed by two highly focussed workshops:

Cybersecurity – defeating the foreign adversary and;

Insider Threat – people and the culture of security.

Purpose of Safeguarding Australia 2019
The Safeguarding Australia 2019 summit is produced by the Research Network for a Secure Australia (RNSA) a multi-disciplinary collaboration established to strengthen Australia’s research capacity to enhance the protection of the nation’s critical infrastructure from natural, human-caused, or accidental disasters, and terrorist acts. 

The format
The main conference will be across one and a half days of plenary sessions followed by two parallel highly focussed half day workshops on afternoon of Day 2.

Attendee profile
Safeguarding Australia is the only high-level conference run by and for leading thinkers, policymakers and practitioners in the national security domain, working across whole-of-government at state and federal levels, including law enforcement and intelligence agencies, as well as engaging with corporate and private security practitioners and providers. Past attendees include: Senior representatives from security, intelligence, military and law enforcement • Risk and security managers and consultants • Agency security advisors • Critical infrastructure owners and operators • Engineers, scientists, technologists, researchers and academics • Corporate and business executives responsible for security and risk.

For more information and updates and to register to attend, please visit:

Safeguarding Australia is Australia’s premier national security conference series. The annual summit is organised by the Research Network for a Secure Australia (RNSA), an Australian Research Council funded research cooperative.For further information please visit

Click here to view registration costs