Trent Scott

Acting First Assistant Director, Australian Cyber Security Centre

Nicole Stephensen

Managing Director, Ground Up Consulting

With two decades in the privacy profession, Nicole is a globally recognised speaker about privacy and its interface with information security, risk management, ethics and trust. She is also a subject matter expert and guest lecturer for tertiary programs in Australia and abroad.

Nicole is a leading member of the International Association of Privacy Professionals (IAPP) and chairs the IAPP’s KnowledgeNet Chapter for Queensland. Prior to its incorporation into the larger IAPP in 2019, Nicole was a founding member of the International Association of Privacy Professionals ANZ Chapter (iappANZ) where she sat for three consecutive terms on the Board.  She is an Advisory Board member for the Centre for Data Leadership, an initiative of the Smart Cities Council of Australia-New Zealand (SCCANZ), and was the SCCANZ 2020 Leadership Award winner for her work in privacy strategy and program management in Australian local governments.

Nicole additionally lends her privacy expertise to the digital policy arena – focusing on matters affecting children and young people, such as minimising digital footprints and improving online safety.

The Honourable Kate Lundy

Acting Chair of the Cyber Security Cooperative Research Centre

Ms Lundy holds a number of directorships including NRMA (Mann Region), Australian Grand Prix Corporation, National Youth Science Forum, Electro Optic Systems, Canberra Institute of Technology and the ACT Defence Industry Advisory Board.

Ms Lundy served as a senator representing the Australian Capital Territory in the Australian Federal Parliament for over 19 years. She served in various ministerial positions including the Minister for Multicultural Affairs, the Minister Assisting for the Digital Economy, Minister for Sport and the Minister Assisting for Industry and Innovation. In 2017, Ms Lundy was awarded an Honorary Doctorate for her contribution to information and communications policy by the Australian National University.

Jess Dodson

Customer Engineer (CE) in Security & Identity Modernization, Microsoft

Based in Brisbane, Australia and with over 15 years experience in the management & architecture of identity & security system platforms, a passion for fixing things and a stubbornness to push people to get the basics RIGHT, Jess wears the title of SecOps Witch proudly!

Chances are if you’ve run into “girlgerms” online, you’ve spoken to Jess.

Having spoken at Ignite Australia in 2015, she was bitten by the public-speaking bug and has spoken again at both Ignite New Zealand and Ignite Australia for 2016 & 2017, as well as more local cons such as CrikeyCon and DDDBrisbane.

After taking a year of maternity leave, she made the jump to the corporate world. Jess is now a Customer Engineer with Microsoft, where she spends most of her days presenting to customers – just as if she was on stage at a con. In her downtime, Jess spends far too many hours playing video games & with Lego.


Dave O’Loan

Head of Cyber Relations, AARNet

Dave O’Loan is the Head of Cyber Relations at Australia’s Academic and Research Network (AARNet). Dave’s role is to develop Security related strategic relationships with the Higher Education and Research sector, Government and Industry.

Prior to Joining AARNet in 2019 Dave had a diverse career in the Australian Government working across the telecommunications sector linked to operations in cyber, counter espionage and counter terrorism. Through the work in government, Dave developed unique knowledge around the relationship between cyber and physical security and the importance of understanding the linkages of these to core business operations.

The career shift to the higher education and research sector was driven by a desire to be involved in a sector increasingly becoming a prime target for many cyber adversaries across criminal, issue motivated or nation state, not just in Australia but globally for its massive intellectual property holdings and unique groupings of people.

Nitin Singh

Director, VU Cyber & Digital Networks

Nitin is an entrepreneurial IT leader; focused on delivering business aligned practical and pragmatic security and technology outcomes. Leadership, collaboration, ability to strategise, define and simplify security and IT transformation challenges are key traits developed over 16 years across the banking, consulting and education sector.

An advocate of collaboration, knowledge share and skills uplift, Nitin is currently building opportunities for students at Victoria University to improve their skills through experiential learning, cross sector and cross industry collaboration.

Previously an ISACA Melbourne Chapter board member, Nitin contributes his time to support non-profit professional and personal development organisations. Currently heading up the Cybersecurity and Digital Network Services teams at Victoria University to transform the way digital communications and security is delivered and managed within VU

Brad Davies

Managing Director, Vector Consulting

Brad has worked at the intersection of technology, education and strategy for more than 20 years. Brad has undertaken major reviews for the Commonwealth Government (Impact of Review of the Digital Education Revolution program) and strategy projects for State Governments, universities and peak bodies. His work focuses on the transformative potential of technology with a particular focus on higher education and training, Precincts and collaborative research.

Sasenka Abeysooriya

Principal Analyst, AusCERT

Sasenka Abeysooriya is a skilled and passionate strategist, innovative thinker and strong communicator with over ten years of IT experience. He is experienced in a wide range of activities including; strategy, governance, enterprise architecture, data management & risk transformation.Throughout his career, Sasenka has worked across a wide range of industries and brings specialist expertise in the higher education industry, having worked in the sector for 9 years in both Melbourne and Brisbane, Australia.Sasenka’s passion for complex problem-solving stretches beyond his professional career. Sasenka and his wife Sajanie, dedicate a lot of their time and resources for the benefit of underprivileged children. Having more than ten years of experience in the not-for-profit sector in both management and governance, Sasenka looks for sustainable and long-term solutions.Sasenka holds a board director position at Put Them First, a Brisbane based charity advocating for the rights of foster children. He is also a member of the Higher Education Reference Model working group, a part of CAUDIT.

Mark Carey-Smith

Principal Analyst, AusCERT

Mark has been a cyber security professional for approximately 20 years.

He has worked in operational and architectural infosec roles as well as lecturing. His current focus is governance, risk and compliance with a particular passion for cyber security education, awareness and cultural improvement.

Mark holds an MIT and a PhD from the Queensland University of Technology. Mark’s philosophy is that cyber security should be an enabler of business and that people are our most important asset. The best work places are diverse and inclusive where staff are educated, nurtured and supported to be part of the solution, not perceived as part of the problem.

Mark is an executive member of the Brisbane branch of the Australian Information Security Association and is currently the Principal Analyst at AusCERT.

Rohan Thomas

Information Architect, La Trobe University

Rohan is an information architect at La Trobe University, with 20 years’ experience and 14 years of these with a passion for IT in the Higher Education Industry.  He is a strategic thinker, leader, and drive outcomes in teams with the use of data and technology.

With data at the core to the way we work, he continues to emerge himself and understand the impact it can have on the way we do business.  Rohan culturally lead embracing data and technology which is critical for future success.    He aims to bring data and people together from many sources removing silos, this improves processes and technology use resulting in return driving data integration, self-service access, reporting and analytics, AI, ML, innovation, governance, and data life cycle, securely providing data, to the right people, using the selected tools to ensure we make well-informed decisions, thus effectively and efficiently.

Cameron Duck

Systems Engineer, Monash University

Cameron is the lead Systems Engineer for Single Sign-On and Email at Monash University as part of the Identity team.  He has worked in the IT industry for 20+ years in multiple sectors including education, healthcare and manufacturing at businesses of all sizes.  Cameron has a background in electronics and IT and an interest in automation and using technology in everyday life.

Greg Sawyer

Director, Cybersecurity Program, CAUDIT

Greg Sawyer joined CAUDIT in January 2020 as Director, Cybersecurity Program. Greg has over 20 years’ experience in the Higher Education sector between the University of Sydney and UNSW Sydney.

Prior to this he completed 11 years in the Department of Defence – Army including operation service in Cambodia with the United Nations. Greg has represented on external advisory boards including the Australian Computer Society Internet of Things (IOT) and Cisco Mobile Technical Advisory Board. Greg holds a Master of Business Technology (MBT) and graduated from the CAUDIT Leadership Institute in 2018

Anna Aquilina

CISO, The University of Newcastle and University of Technology, Sydney

Anna is currently the CISO for UTS and the University of Newcastle, a role she took up in February this year. She has 25 year experience, the majority of this working for the British and Australian governments in the area of national security, with a focus on disrupting organised crime, working in intelligence, central government and the foreign service, and law enforcement.  For the last decade she has been working in the area of cyber crime and cyber security, commencing while still with the Serious Organised Crime Agency in the UK, before moving to the private sector working with EY and PwC as a Director in their cybersecurity practices. She returned to Australia three years ago, and is very happily in her new CISO role.

George Kamar

Cyber Security Specialist, Deakin University

George is a Cyber Security Specialist for Deakin University and part of their SOC on the frontline of incident response and threat hunting. George was also awarded the Vice Chancellor’s Award for outstanding contribution to the digital environment. As a previous Deakin student, he is passionate about giving students the invaluable opportunity to gain practical experience.

Over the past 5+ years in SOC environments both in and out of Deakin, he has gained confidence and maturity working in this environment by the mentorship of his leaders and peers.

James Ng

General Manager Security Operations, AARNet

James is a leader with a range of experience across various cyber security, technology risk and audit domains with a diverse background in telecommunications, entertainment, consulting and FMCG (Fast Moving Consumer Goods). At AARNet (Australia’s Academic & Research Network), James is responsible for the build and then on-going operation of AARNet’s Security Operations Centre (SOC). Most recently, James was a leader in Telstra’s Cyber Security team focusing on Governance, Risk and Assurance where he was also seconded to their digital-only challenger brand Belong to lead their information security function.

Professor Monica Whitty

Director of UNSW Institute for Cyber Security

Professor Monica Whitty is the Director of the UNSW Institute for Cyber Security, where she also holds a Professorship in Human Factors in Cyber Security. She is a member of the World Economic Forum Cyber Security Centre and was a member of the WEF Cyber Security Global Futures Committee. Her work uniquely considers the psychological aspects of cyber security.

Prof Whitty’s academic career began in Australia before moving to the UK (2003) and then returning home to Australia (2018). In the UK she worked for universities in the Russell Group (Queen’s University, Belfast; University of Warwick), and The 1994 Group Universities (Unversity of Leicester). In Australia, she previously worked at the University of Melbourne before commencing her post at UNSW in 2020. Professor Whitty has worked in a GCHQ accredited Cyber Security Centre in the UK and has held an honorary post at the University of Oxford at the Oxford Martin School and the Oxford Internet Institute, and an honorary Professorship at the Institute of Royal Holloway, University of London. Monica has extensive experience in leading large interdisciplinary, international teams on funded projects.

Monica is the author of over 100 articles and 5 books. She is a leading expert on cyber fraud (esp. romance scams), identities created in cyberspace, online security risks, behaviour in cyberspace, insider threat, as well as detecting and preventing deception, such as cyberscams and mis/disinformation (drawing from psychological and social science theories and methods ).

James Harper

CISO, University of Auckland

James is Chief Information Security Officer at the University of Auckland, leading the establishment of this position within the institution. Prior to this he held roles in digital architecture and infrastructure operations. James promotes a risk-managed approach to cybersecurity, positioning the practice as an enabler rather than a blocker.

With qualifications in Computer Science and Law, James brings a unique perspective to the technical and human challenges of modern cybersecurity threats. He has transitioned the University to a framework-led approach to governing and managing cybersecurity, allowing objective assessment of capabilities and risks, and the ability for priorities and decisions to be backed by data.

James has also led the University response to the COVID lockdowns, adapting operations to work-from-home while minimising disruption to critical activities.

Charles Sterner


Charles is the Chief Information Security Officer for AARNet, leading AARNet’s cyber security strategy. His role oversees the development of AARNet’s Cyber Security Services, along with managing the security of AARNet’s network infrastructure and IT assets. Prior to joining AARNet, Charles was the Global Director for Palo Alto Network’s SOC Strategy, where he worked across Information Security, Product Management, and R&D to develop strategies for the full adoption of security capabilities within the SOCs of some of Palo Alto’s largest global customers. Prior to that, Charles headed HP’s Global Cyber Defense Center, one of the world’s largest SOCs and among other roles led the ground zero formation of Sony PlayStation’s Cyber Intelligence and Defense Center as a response to the PlayStation Network breach of 2011.  Charles also served in the US Navy, where he specialized in Aviation Warfare, and later Cyber Intelligence.

Damien Manuel

AISA Board Director and Industry Professor / Director of Deakin’s Centre for Cyber Security Research and Innovation (CSRI)

Damien Manuel is the Industry Professor and Director of Deakin’s Centre for Cyber Security Research & Innovation and is the Chairperson of the Australian Information Security Association (AISA), a not-for profit organisation which aims to improve Cyber Security in Australia at a Government, Industry and Community level.

Damien is currently on CompTIA’s Executive Advisory Committee in the USA, the Victorian Ombudsman’s Audit and Risk Committee, the board of RSA Australia, the chair of Standards Australia’s Standards development committee for cyber security and privacy and helps mentor entrepreneurs through CyRise, Australia’s only cyber security startup accelerator.

Underpinning his experience is a diverse educational grounding ranging from the highest security, audit and governance certifications complemented by an Executive MBA with an international business focus. Damien also has a background in genetic engineering, biology, chemistry and is a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors (GAICD).


Simon Paine

Former Head of Information Technology at UNSW Global

Simon Paine is an EdTech executive with an enviable track record of delivering significant transformational value across the Australian Schools, Vocational and Higher Education sectors over the last 25 years.

Though technology is his trade, people remain his passion and he is a skilled communicator and collaborator, comfortable dealing with people at all levels of organisations. His simple strategic approach of using technology to ‘do business better or do better business’ has resonated within those organisations and allowed him to focus on delivering real outcomes.

At UNSW Global, Simon built a high performing, business-oriented IT group that partnered with the business to deliver record growth, new products and services in the pathways and assessments businesses. He also delivered new cyber security, privacy, and identity management capability to underpin the business, coining the phrase ‘You cannot have privacy without security, and you cannot have security without identity’ to cut through with the business.

Ben Caisley

Head of JAPAC at Chronicle

Ben is the head of JAPAC at Chronicle, recently acquired by Google Cloud. Ben is a trusted advisor to organisations across the region to help them improve their security postures in alignment with business initiatives. Ben is also a NSWCSIN Cyber Ambassador, working with Schools across the Greater Sydney, Central Coast & Newcastle areas to increase knowledge of Cyber Security Awareness & Careers. Prior to joining Google Cloud, Ben worked at Palo Alto Networks and at Dell leading teams in Sydney for over 14 years.

Andrew McAllister

Vice President, Asia Pacific, Thycotic

Andrew is the VP of the Asia Pacific region for Thycotic and responsible for a fantastic team of cyber security professionals who are passionate about delivering world class solutions for our channel and end user communities

Mark Michael

National Sales Manager, Fortinet

Mark is a National Sales Manager at Fortinet, managing a team of sales professionals across Australia. In a secondary capacity Mark supports the go to market, strategy and alliances across the Education Sector for Fortinet in Australia. Over the past few years Mark has taken on a number of volunteer roles including 7 years as a Commissioner for Catholic Schools and the last 5 years as a School Board Chairperson. Mark is also a member of Australian Information Security Association and an AustCyber Mentor. In his spare time Mark is Vice President of his local soccer club and an active member of the local State Electorate Convention Branch. Mark still attempts to play soccer on the weekends, referees soccer to keep fit, has been married for 17 years and has three children, a 13 year old and twins that are 11.

Simon Bray

Cloud and Alliances Manager, Fortinet

Simon is the Cloud and Alliances Manager driving successful outcomes for Customers, Partners, Cloud Providers and Alliances. Simon started from a strong technical background and became the “go to” consultant for disaster recovery solutions with customers including Virgin Airlines. During his career, Simon has worked for 12 years in an advisory capacity for large Enterprise and Government such as Department of Defence, ATO, Telstra. As the Cyber Threat Landscape grew and the attack surface increased Simon saw that prevention rather than cure was where he needed to focus his efforts. Simon now works to help protect businesses from the ever-changing landscape of modern cyber threats.

Wayne Neich

Regional Director A&NZ, Bitglass

A curiosity for learning and a passion to be a part of the very best team have driven my career journey.  I love the StartUp culture and the mate ship with colleagues here in Australia, New Zealand, Asia and the USA.  It’s not always smooth sailing but very proud to have been part of teams that built businesses in partnership with Distributors and Resellers.  Teams that earned the trust of some of Australia and New Zealand’s most visionary and innovative customers who were prepared to sponsor development of new R&D technologies including NSW Department of Education, Qantas, CBA, Westpac, Telstra, BHP, Australian Government and the New Zealand Government.  Despite failing as an Engineer I lucked out in Sales by working with great engineers like Paul Jackson & Graham Daniels (Summit Communications), Mark Hamester (Bay Networks/Nortel), James Wong (Blue Coat), Brian Grant (Silver-Peak) , Carlo Nizeti (Nutanix) and now Coskun Kamiloglu at Bitglass.

Dr Vaughan Shanks

CEO, Cydarm Technologies

Vaughan is the CEO of Cydarm Technologies, a company that is enabling security operations teams to perform better and faster via a secure case management platform. Prior to Cydarm, Vaughan worked as a software engineer in a range of Federal Government positions, working with organisations in Defence, intelligence, and law enforcement, in both a Public Service and private sector capacity, in Australia and the USA. Vaughan has a PhD in Computer Science from RMIT University.

Stefan Prandl

CTO, Hyprfire

Stefan Prandl is the Inventor & CTO of Hyprfire. As a former Curtin University researcher & lecturer and experienced threat-hunter & forensic analyst for ES2, Stefan has first hand understanding of the evolving challenges in cyber-security. When he’s not writing code and staring at pcap files, you can find him enjoying coffee with his wife, doing some kind of incident response, or trying to explain to his non-technical friends what it is he actually does at work.

Alison O’Hare

Technical Director at Mimecast

Alison O’Hare is the Technical Director at Mimecast, based in the Melbourne office.

Allison is in charge of all things technical for both pre- and post-sales. Her primary responsibility is finding solutions for the technical and business challenges prospects might have and ensure customer satisfaction. Alison has over 17 years’ experience in the IT industry across roles in cyber security and network engineering roles, including 9 years at Mimecast in a variety of leadership positions. Prior to being appointed as Technical Director at Mimecast, Alison was part of the Global Education Team, focusing on technical writing and customer training. Alison started her career at Mimecast as Service Delivery Director, working from the Boston office. With customer experience at the core of Mimecast values, Alison is determined to different than the rest as an IT vendor, approach customer engagements with a personality and be proactive and honest in all engagements.

Mark Goudie

Director of Services ,Asia Pacific and Japan, CrowdStrike

Mark Goudie is the Director of Services for Asia Pacific and Japan at CrowdStrike. He has over two decades of experience as an incident responder, programmer, security manager and network engineer. At CrowdStrike Mark is responsible helping clients respond to incidents, hunt for intruders, secure their networks, and build more resilient infrastructure in Asia Pacific, Europe and the United States.

Prior to joining CrowdStrike Mark led the Security Advisory and Incident Response practice for CISCO and previously managed incident response teams for Mandiant, SecureWorks and Verizon working on nation state, cyber criminal and insider breach cases as well as leading strategic preventative assignments for clients. Mark was a lead author in one of the seminal security reports, the Verizon Data Breach Investigations Report. This wide diversity of experience has enabled Mark to be able to communicate with technologists and executives in language they both can understand.

Mark has been awarded civilian citations for assisting law enforcement agencies in large and complicated criminal investigations that encompassed many legal jurisdictions and law enforcement agencies. His ability to see the big picture across multiple related incidents enabled law enforcement to apprehend and successfully prosecute a number cyber criminals.

Mark holds a bachelors degree in business, majoring in information technology from the Victoria University, and certifications from the Global Information Assurance Council (GIAC).