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Businesses given incentive to invest in cyber security

The Morrison government has announced significant tax savings for businesses that invest in digital technology, cyber security and staff training. 

30 March 2022 

Small businesses will be able to deduct a further 20% from the cost of cloud services and cyber security systems as the government encourages more SMEs to adopt digital technologies. 

“From tonight, every hundred dollars these small businesses spend on digital technologies... will see them get a $120 tax deduction,” Treasurer Josh Frydenberg said during his budget speech.

Businesses with an aggregated annual turnover of less than $50 million will be able to claim the discount on expenditures up to $100,000.

The same incentive applies to training, with businesses granted a $120 tax break for every $100 spent on training. The courses must be provided to employees in Australia or online and delivered by training entities registered in Australia. In-house or on-the-job training will also not be eligible.

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The SME incentives come as the government unveiled its $9.9 billion package to bolster Australia’s cyber and intelligence capabilities.

The package includes additional investment into the Australian Signals Directorate (ASD) under an initiative dubbed Project REDSPICE (Resilience, Effects, Defence, Space, Intelligence, Cyber and Enablers), which is expected to nearly double the size of the intelligence agency over the coming decade.

“The 2022-23 budget continues this government’s strong investment in Defence and the Australian Signals Directorate (ASD). This includes a $9.9 billion investment over the next decade in new national cyber and intelligence capabilities,” Minister for Defence, Peter Dutton said.

“Project REDSPICE... is the largest ever investment in the capabilities of the ASD.

“REDSPICE will substantially increase ASD’s offensive cyber capabilities, its ability to detect and respond to cyber attacks, and introduce new intelligence capabilities. It will also create over 1,900 new jobs, almost doubling the ASD’s size,” he concluded.

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