Seittenranta to be permanent DPS CIO

Long-time Centrelink and Department of Human Services IT executive Eija Seittenranta has been appointed to a permanent role as the chief information officer of the Federal Department of Parliamentary Services, following a temporary appointment to the role in October.

Westpac loses McKinnon deputy Sarv Girn

The fallout from the reshuffle at Westpac continued today, with the Financial Review breaking the news that senior IT executive Sarv Girn would quit the bank in search of a chief information officer role elsewhere.

Budget 2016: Major Child Care, Veterans’ IT reform projects approved

The Federal Government has approved several hundred million dollars' worth of funding to reform key IT platforms in the Department of Human Services and Veterans' Affairs, in moves that will unlock substantial IT transformation packages of work.

Mirvac dumps BlackBerry for iPhone; and a few thoughts about the model

The nation's number two telco Optus and its subsidiary Alphawest has revealed that they recently helped shopping centre giant Mirvac ditch its fleet of BlackBerry mobile phones for an Apple iPhone replacement.

Microsoft confirms shrunken TechEd Australia

Microsoft has confirmed it will radically overhaul its giant TechEd conference in Australia in a way that will essentially spell the end of the iconic conference in its traditional mega-format, with the company confirming it will hold smaller TechEd conferences in Sydney and Melbourne in October and additional dates and cities in planning for early 2015.

Dimension Data to fit out flagship Queensland Government skyscraper

Global ICT services provider Dimension Data has won the bid to fit out and support the networking infrastructure for the Queensland Government’s new flagship offices at 1 William Street, Brisbane.

Oracle chief Mark Hurd hits Australia

Oracle's global co-president Mark Hurd is in Australia to meet with key clients and to catch up on his tennis.

NSW cloud policy inadequate, says consultant

Marten Hauville, a technical business consultant at local firm buildpartner, has examined the NSW Government's new cloud computing policy in detail, and found it extremely lacking.

NT Police rapidly expanding use of facial recognition technology

news The Northern Territory Police Force has revealed it is rapidly expanding its use of facial recognition technology it has purchased from Japanese vendor...

Monash University invests $4.1m in supercomputer project

Monash University has announced it has invested $4.1m in a high-performance computing facility with plans to build a new supercomputer.

Govt CTO explains new role; with Lego

We're pleased that John Sheridan has published the complete text of a lengthy speech he recently gave explaining his new role as Australian Government chief technology officer. Plus, he does so using a stack of cool lego pictures and a Cylon from Battlestar Galactica. Really, what else could you want?

Digital Transformation Office adds Sydney digs as formal hiring campaign kicks off

The Federal Government’s Digital Transformation Office has revealed plans to locate a small office on-campus at the University of Technology Sydney, as well as embarking on a rapid hiring campaign in which it will seek the best Australian technologists to help deliver lasting changing in government IT service delivery.

Cisco issues 9.2 percent Aussie price rise

Networking hardware giant Cisco has slapped a blanket 9.2 percent price increase on all of its products and services in Australia, giving its customers and partners just one month's notice of the price rise.

Passion for Human Services: DHS CIO outlines vision

New Department of Human Services chief information officer Gary Sterrenberg gives a wide-ranging interview following his appointment and shows that the IT portfolio within DHS still has a powerful voice.

Defence appoints Mohan as new CTO

The Department of Defence has appointed a new chief technology officer, nicking senior Toll IT executive Aiyaswami Mohan to replace its previous CTO Matt Yannopoulous, who left in October last year to take up the role of chief information officer at the Department of Immigration and Border Protection.

Microsoft beats to another CRM deal

Microsoft announced this week that its Dynamics CRM solution had beaten rival platform to another Australian deal for CRM delivered through a web browser, with the company picking up work at local conferencing services provider Redback Conferencing.

Bloodbath: Qantas to cut $200m in IT costs, jobs

Embattled airline Qantas has flagged plans to cut $200 million out of its technology budget over the next three years and undertake reviews of its major technology supplier contracts, as part of a company-wide cost-cutting initiative that will see a total 5,000 staff leave the company and some $2 billion in total costs cut.

IBM Australia jobs going across the Tasman? Great, says New Zealand

We can’t help but be amused by this article in New Zealand’s premiere business newspaper, the National Business Review. In it, veteran technology reporter Chris Keall lampoons an email received by subscribers of the Australian Financial Review, in which the paper’s editor in chief Michael Stutchbury laments IBM Australia’s decision to send jobs offshore, including to New Zealand.

Homeless Sydney dev “will code for latte”

I don't know whether to feel slightly dubious about her story or merely sorry for Adelle Hartley, a Sydney C#/SQL developer who says she is homeless and has featured in an extensive article published by ninemsn this week.

The NSW RTA’s iMacs lasted a full decade

The NSW RTA (now the RMS) finally reveals plans to replace the 'sunflower' iMacs in its motor registries around the state, a decade after they were first deployed. Now that's what you call return on investment.

“Can do” Queensland starts cutting IT staff

Queensland's new LNP Premier Campbell Newman has started wielding the axe in the state's public service, according to a report by the Courier Mail newspaper published yesterday -- and information technology staff are some of the first in line.

Bailey quits Macquarie for non-profit COO role

Long-time Macquarie University chief information officer Marc Bailey has left the educational institution to join non-profit group Intersect, which focuses on applying advanced ICT technologies to the practice of research.

Innovation in Govt must be a tool: Not the end goal

Innovation and transformations do not, by themselves, improve government. They are simply techniques and can be implemented both well and badly, depending on the people, culture and environment they are employed within.

Fairfax to let MS Office ‘wither away’

Remember how publishing giant Fairfax announced plans several years ago to dump Microsoft’s Office and Exchange platforms for most of its 11,000 staff and switch to Google Apps? Well, this week the company’s chief information officer Andrew Lam Po-Tang gave the CeBIT conference a detailed look at what that process actually looks like inside the company. It turns out the demise of Microsoft Office is not so much a bang but a whimper for the publisher.

Unisys IT modernisation gives Co-operative Bank a boost

Unisys has released a statement saying that its New Zealand subsidiary has improved the Co-operative Bank’s IT infrastructure using Unisys ClearPath Forward systems.

As expected, Mailes to lead Vic Govt IT

As has been widely known inside the Victorian Government for a while now, former South Australian whole of government chief information officer Grantly Mailes has been appointed to a permanent role as Victoria's first chief technology advocate -- a new style of role recommended in the state's new ICT strategy which Mailes coordinated.

Medibank IT glitch delays tax statements

Australia's largest health insurance provider Medibank has announced that it is experiencing a technical issue which is "likely" to prevent it from providing annual tax statements to "a majority of customers" before its 15 July deadline.

$1.5bn splurge: ANZ banks on customer tech

Australia and New Zealand Banking Group has revealed plans to spend up to $1.5 billion on a wide range of customer-facing technology systems and branch refurbishments, in the latest salvo of an intensifying battle between Australia’s major banks to position themselves as technology leaders.

Linux option $100k more than Windows, claims Members Equity Bank

Small Australian bank Members Equity Bank (ME Bank) has issued a joint statement with Microsoft claiming that using Linux as its core operating system underpinning its new core banking platform would cost $100,000 more than using a platform based on Windows Server 2012, but without providing any evidence for its claim.

Android in the enterprise: Three Aussie examples from Samsung

Forget iOS and Windows. Today we present three decently sized deployments of Android in the Australian market on Samsung's hardware, which the Korean vendor has dug up from its archives over the past several years for us after a little prompting :)

Will Australia meet its April 2014 Open Government commitment?

Will Australia join Russia, becoming the second nation to withdraw? Or will it simply delay membership - one year, two years or more? Perhaps we'll find out with a government announcement in the next month regarding its OGP commitment. Or perhaps all we can expect is ongoing silence.

“No public interest” in PCEHR review release

The Department of Health has stated it does not believe there is a public interest case for the Federal Government's review of the troubled Personally Controlled Electronic Health Records project to be released publicly, despite the fact that Health Minister Peter Dutton has stated the document contains "a comprehensive plan for the future of electronic health records in Australia".

News Corp Australia dumps Exchange for Gmail

The new chief technology officer of publishing giant News Corp Australia has wasted no time making big changes to the organisation's IT infrastructure model, announcing a huge formal move to Google's mail and calendaring suite just months after taking on the position.

DoHA latest to ditch Lotus Notes for Exchange

The Federal Department of Health and Ageing has revealed it will be the latest Australian government agency to dump IBM's Lotus Notes/Domino environment in favour of a switch to a collaboration platform built on the Outlook/Exchange ecosystem, as part of a continuing trend of migrations to the Microsoft platform.

CommBank reveals Harte’s replacement

The Commonwealth Bank of Australia has promoted an internal executive who joined the bank in September after a lengthy career at petroleum giant VP and IT services group Accenture to replace its outgoing chief information officer Michael Harte, who announced in early May that he would leave the bank.

More mainframe workloads moved to Oracle

Over the past several years we’ve begun to see a bit of a trend in Australia of major organisations shifting server workloads away from traditional mainframes and onto Oracle platforms, especially its integrated Exadata and Exalogic systems. The key driver of continued mainframe use has always been the legacy platform’s efficiency, stability and (to a certain extent) flexibility (such as in its virtualisation ability), but it’s also had numerous disadvantages, which we need not go into here. As time has gone on, it appears the performance levels inherent in Oracle’s systems are starting to lure CIOs away from the mainframe environment where appropriate. We saw this in Westpac in January 2013, and now, according to iTNews, we’re starting to see it also at another major financial institution — ASIC.

Shock: Queensland Health to get IT review

From the department of why the hell haven't they already done this comes the news that that bastion of IT systems stability and competence Queensland Health (yup, the very same, you'd be surprised how often it pops up in Delimiter stories) will undertake a review into its IT procurement practices and IT governance arrangements.

Qantas Credit Union deploys Infosys Finacle’s ‘core banking as a service’

One of Australia’s largest credit unions, the Qantas Credit Union, has revealed it will deploy a new core banking platform from Infosys’ Finacle division (EdgeVerve Systems(, as well as a host of other related services, in a move that the bank says will see it transition to a ‘core banking as a service’ model.

Qld Govt releases detailed, comprehensive cloud-first roadmap

The Queensland State Government has published an extremely detailed cloud computing implementation model which it will use to formally push its many departments and agencies into a cloud computing-first procurement model, as the state attempts to address its substantial issues with fundamental ICT project and service delivery.

Qld sets royal commission into Health payroll

It's time. One of Australia's greatest ever IT disasters is now going to have the *ahem* privilege of having a royal commission conducted into how precisely it went wrong.

Questions & answers: Zendesk Australia

Michael Hansen is the Asia-Pacific managing director of software as a service firm Zendesk, which offers a Web 2.0-style hosted helpdesk solution. Zendesk has recently expanded strongly in Australia, hiring staff and announcing that it has 1,000 Australian customers. In this interview, we ask Hansen about the company's local expansion plans.

DTO mandates APIs for Federal agencies

The DTO is looking to make it mandatory for government agencies to create APIs for all new services, and to consume their own APIs when delivering those services.

Unisys wins DIAC again in open tender

Those of you with long memories will recall that the Federal Department of Immigration and Citizenship has contracted IT services giant Unisys to provide desktop support services to the department since 2007. Unisys this morning announced that it had won an open tender to retain the work through to at last mid-2018, at a value of $104.1 million.

Defence hasn’t tested IBM contract since 1999

The Federal Department of Defence has revealed that it renewed a major IT hardware and software contract with IBM in late 2008 to the tune of $342 million, despite not having put the work out to public tender since 1999.

A complete picture of NAB’s IT transformation

You may have noticed that National Australia Bank enterprise transformation EGM Adam Bennett gave a speech at a CEDA lunch in Sydney this week. The executive's comments have caused a flurry of articles in the media. A brief overview, for your Friday afternoon reading pleasure, can be found here.

18 months later … WA Health finally advertises for CIO

18 months after a state parliamentary committee ordered it to, Western Australia’s Department of Health has finally advertised for a permanent chief information officer to end years of bungled major IT projects.

Adobe bucks IT price hike inquiry

US software giant Adobe is fast emerging as one of the toughest nuts to crack when it comes to the IT price hike inquiry currently being carried out by the Federal Parliament.

Two years later, NTT sacking Frontline staff

Just two years after Japanese technology consortium NTT revealed it would purchase the majority of Australian IT services firm Frontline Systems (which also owns hosting company Harbour MSP), the trio have revealed plans to make a substantial number of Australian staff redundant as part of a reorganisation.

Federal Govt explicitly explores IT offshoring in landmark move

If you have spent any time working in IT in Australia's public sector, you are probably aware that there is something of a taboo in government departments and agencies using offshored IT services such as are provided from countries such as India, as well as increasingly Malaysia, the Philippines and other countries. However, this may be about to change.

Microsoft stonewalls IT price hike inquiry

Global technology giant Microsoft has declined to provide the Federal Parliament's IT price hike inquiry with concrete details as to why many of its products cost dramatically more in Australia than in its home country of the US, despite prolonged questioning on the issue from Members of Parliament last week.

SA Govt follows WA, Qld away from ICT shared services

One would hope that the Federal Government will be closely examining the experiences that states such as South Australia, Queensland and Western Australia have had with shared services, before it commits to its own shared services approach. Because to rush in haphazardly would be dangerous indeed.

Adobe’s biennial tradition: 50% Aussie price hikes

Global software giant Adobe has continued a long-running tradition of extensively marking up its prices for the Australian market, revealing yesterday that locals would pay up to $1,400 more for the exact same software when they buy the new version 6 of its Creative Suite platform compared to residents of the United States.

Vendors unimpressed by IT price hike inquiry

A number of global technology vendors likely to be hauled before Australia's Parliament to justify their local price markups have grudgingly and briefly signalled their acceptance of the proceedings and willingness to participate, although some have completely refused to comment on the issue.

Web Directions hosts May mini-confs

Local conference outfit Web Directions, best known for its popular October conference of the same name, will host two smaller conferences for web professionals in May, this year: Web Directions Code, set for May 23rd and 24th in Melbourne, and State of Play on May 28th in Sydney.

Accenture parlays CBA skills into Child Support win

The Federal Department of Human Services today announced a deal with IT services giant Accenture that will see the company help replace the ageing Child Support payments system, using the SAP technology which Accenture developed extensive skills with during the Commonwealth Bank's core banking placement project.

CommBank ditches softphone strategy for smartphones

The Commonwealth Bank of Australia has confirmed plans to substantially modify its high-profile softphone-based unified communications strategy recently implemented at its flagship Commonwealth Bank Place facility in Sydney, turning instead to a mass smartphone deployment as its replacement.

Parliament trials Windows 8 tablets

ZDNet publishes an interview with Federal Parliament chief information officer Eija Seittenranta, detailing the fact that the Parliament is conducting a trial of Windows 8 tablets.

Harris Farm deploys IBM all-in-one servers

Retailer Harris Farm Markets revealed in late December that it had deployed IBM's all-in-one compute, storage and networking Flex System in its operations to meet a variety of aims ranging from reducing IT costs and complexity to boosting the performance of business systems such as its ERP platform.

Anatomy of Qld Health IT disaster:
 IBM should never have been appointed

The Queensland Government's formal inquiry into the payroll systems upgrade debacle at Queensland Health has found damning allegations of procurement impropriety in the appointment of IBM as prime contractor for the initiative, and has concluded that Big Blue should never have won the contract in the first place.

Qantas CIO jets off to Airbus

Qantas Airways' Chief Information Officer, Luc Hennekens, is leaving the company to take on the same role at Airbus, effective 1 October.

St George trials Apple iBeacon in branches

Westpac subsidiary St George Bank has revealed plans to deploy a trial of Apple's iBeacon technology in three Sydney branches, in a move which will see customers' iPhones sent a welcome message and "tailored information" when they enter a branch.

NSW Health seeks CIOs in restructure

NSW Health has advertised two high-profile chief information officer roles, as the State Government's plan to ramp up improvements in healthcare through the use of technology impacts the organisation and it's eHealth NSW sub-division.

Labor claims DHS telephone and IT systems ‘collapsing’

Labor has released a statement over what it calls a "collapse" in the standards of telecoms and IT services at Centrelink and Medicare.

NSW Police wants fingerprint scanners for Samsung’s Galaxy Note 4

The New South Wales police force has gone to market for fingerprint scanners to add to its fleet of existing Samsung Galaxy Note 4 smartphones, as part of a national trend that is increasingly allowing law enforcement authorities to examine biometric data to verify identities in the field.

Qld Govt reportedly dumps CIO Grant

The Queensland Government has reportedly "removed" its whole of government chief information officer Peter Grant from his position, just 18 months after the executive was appointed to the role for the second time.

Victorian high school deploys Android tablets

Students and staff of years 9–12 at Brighton Grammar School, Victoria will each be provided with an Acer Iconia Tab A500, from this week onwards, Acer revealed in a statement yesterday. The move is part of what is being publicised as the first large Android program for an Australian school.

ASG picks up WA IT services work

Nice work if you can get it. Perth-headquartered IT services outfit has revealed several major new tranches of IT services work over the past several weeks that is putting it in good stead with the Western Australian State Government.

ASD adds ‘little clouds’ to list of Govt-approved cloud computing platforms

The Australian Signals Directorate appears to have added two smaller providers to its list of approved cloud computing services for use by Federal Government departments and agencies, with small local suppliers Sliced Tech and Vault Systems taking pride of place alongside major multinational vendors.

iBooks textbooks? Sorry, not for Australia

Apple has limited access to the broad range of new educational textbooks announced through its iBookstore overnight to students in the US, locking Australians and those in other countries out of accessing the new content from publishers such as McGraw-Hill and Pearson.

Coalition slams Labor’s “$1bn e-health debacle”

Shadow Health Minister Peter Dutton has taken a pickaxe to the Federal Government's Personally Controlled Electronic Health Record (PCEHR) scheme, claiming the costly project was "more about spin than about outcomes for patients".

Policy innovation: Govt replaces cloud computing panel with … new panel

What’s not precisely clear at this point is how this new panel will differ from the old one, or how the new ‘cloud-first’ policy will differ from the old one.

Optus inks $30m IT services, telco deal with UGL

The business division of Singtel subsidiary Optus today announced that it had signed a five year, $30 million contract for managed ICT and mobility services with Australian engineering and property services group UGL that will affect more than 8,000 UGL staff around Australia and throughout Asia.

IT price comparisons not useful, says AIIA

The IT industry's peak lobby group today said it was "not useful" to directly compare prices on technology goods and services between Australia and other countries and that increased Australian prices on such goods reflected different conditions and protections locally compared with other countries.

Report: Oracle may be dumping its Australian support centre

Spend a lot of time calling Oracle's Australian support centre for those pesky database support enquiries? Well, if a report late last year and mutterings this week around the traps are any indication, you could shortly be speaking to someone in somewhere like Romania instead.

Google Apps defeats Lotus, GroupWise in Australia

Google's popular Apps collaboration suite has knocked IBM's Lotus Notes/Domino and Novell's GroupWise platforms off their perch to become the second most popular office suite in Australian enterprises behind Microsoft Outlook/Exchange, analyst firm Telsyte revealed this week.

Uni of Adelaide appoints new CIO

The University of Adelaide has appointed a new chief information officer, Mark Gregory, it announced last week.

New cloud development aims to support charities

Appichar, a technology company that has been working with not-for-profit organisations for over ten years in the UK and three years in Australia, has launched a locally developed system called ‘Supporter360’ that aims to use the latest cloud technologies to help charitable organisations computerise their operations with minimal capital investment.

KONE staff pick Lumia over iPhone, Samsung, HTC

More than 70 percent of staff at the local division of elevator manufacturing company KONE picked a model from Nokia's Lumia handset line over other options from Apple, HTC and Samsung, when given the choice, the Finnish manufacturer claimed in a statement issued yesterday.

Fairfax wants to dump Office, Exchange for Google

Media giant Fairfax has announced plans to will ditch Microsoft's Office and Exchange platforms for most of its 11,000-odd staff, with the company to become one of the largest known Australian organisations to shift onto Google's Apps platform for both email and office productivity software.

NetSuite in whole of business TurboSmart deal

Business-focused software as a service giant NetSuite has unveiled yet another win with a mid-sized Australian company, revealing a deal with automotive performance products manufacturer Turbosmart that has seen the company deploy a comprehensive suite of NetSuite products across its business.

Telstra wins $474m DHS telco contract

Telstra has emerged as the victor from a prolonged tendering process for a comprehensive suite of telecommunications services at the Federal Department of Human Services, announcing today that it had won a deal with the department worth $474 million.

ANZ CEO announces head of digital role in raft of executive changes

Along with a number of significant changes to the executive team at ANZ, the bank's new CEO Shayne Elliott has announced plans to create a role for a new head of digital banking.

NSW Govt consults on ICT policy

The New South Wales Government, which has already been making waves in the IT industry for its comprehensive and forward-thinking ICT policy, has kicked off consultation on the next iteration of the strategy.

Brisbane City Council loses CIO Brant

Brisbane City Council chief information officer Nicholas Brant is to leave the organisation, right as Brisbane, the largest council organisation in Australia is in the middle of several major technology initiatives, including offshoring a substantial number of IT roles, shifting some work into the cloud and spending $353 million on a comprehensive, SAP-based businesses administration system.

SAP’s SuccessFactors deploys Aussie datacentre

SAP subsidiary SuccessFactors has opened a datacentre located in Australia from which it will sell its software as a service-based human resource management and business execution software to local customers, in one of the first known deployments of such dedicated Australian infrastructure by a global SaaS vendor.

ANZ Bank says no business case for core banking IT overhaul

Right now, there is a 'halo' effect that surrounds CommBank's core banking overhaul project that gives strong credence to the business case for its first mover advantage in the core banking IT race. I'm not sure that ANZ really understands just how powerful this overall effect can be. If it did, I would suspect it would be quite worried indeed.

Rackspace hires high-profile cloud CIO Perkins

Hosting and cloud computing giant Rackspace this morning revealed it had hired one of Australia's most cloud-savvy chief information officers, former Altium IT executive Alan Perkins, in a key role to spearhead the adoption and development of the company's solutions in Australia.

Government to retain ownership of Canberra’s ICON network

The Federal Government has announced it will not sell off the Intra Government Communications Network (ICON) – a fibre network connecting public service buildings throughout Canberra.

Australia’s universities hacked on a regular basis

Not all of the hype around IT security can be believed at the moment — several times when your writer has investigated so-called ‘hacking’ attacks in recent months, we’ve found only low-level script-kiddie-type of behaviour at the bottom of the situation. However, there definitely are some serious break-ins around, as chronicled in this somewhat disturbing article published in late April by citizen journalism site The Citizen.

Guzman y Gomez likes the taste of NetSuite

Fast-growing Mexican restaurant fast food chain Guzman y Gomez revealed this week that it has upgraded its previous MYOB-based accounting system to a comprehensive business platform from software as a service vendor NetSuite, to help support the chain's ongoing expansion plans.

Adecco dumps handsets for softphones with Optus, Cisco

news Human resources group Adecco yesterday revealed it had undertaken a substantial refresh of its internal telephony and Internet platform with the primary assistance...

Amazon’s virtual desktop hits Australia

Cloud computing giant Amazon Web Services today announced that its WorkSpaces virtual desktop platform was available to be delivered from its Sydney datacentre, in a move which may accelerate the adoption of virtual desktop infrastructure in Australia in general.

IT firm Geek helps Adelaide accountants beat CryptoLocker attack

Australian IT services firm Geek said it has helped an Adelaide accounting firm recover from a CryptoLocker malware attack in "just 15 minutes" using a US security product called Datto.

Parliament’s IT systems a complete shambles

The department which runs Australia's Federal Parliament has published a damning report acknowledging it has widespread problems with IT service delivery and infrastructure, stemming from the fact that it has "no parliament-wide IT strategic plan" and no mechanism for making strategic IT decisions, despite a decade of reports warning of the situation.

Hospital IT booking system ‘putting lives at risk’

A new IT booking platform at the Austin Hospital and Olivia Newton-John Cancer and Wellness Centre in Melbourne is reportedly placing the welfare of patients with serious conditions at risk.

Poor Victorian IT system affecting child safety

The Victorian Auditor-General has told the state's Department of Human Services to treat the need for a better client information system as a "priority", with revelations that the department's existing system was difficult to use and not being used correctly, as well as the fact that staff are still using cumbersome fax-based technology to report abuse.

AGIMO in flurry of cloud computing moves

The Federal Government’s peak technology strategy division has made a series of announcements aimed at pushing forward its vision with respect to public sector uptake of the new generation of cloud computing services and making such services available on the right terms to departments and agencies.

Openstack gaining traction in Australia

A survey of attendees at the country's first OpenStack conference held in Sydney last month has indicated that OpenStack is likely to experience growth in the Australian market over the next 18 months.

Office 365 juggernaut hits ANU

Qantas, Mr Rental, Fortescue, Coles, Curtin University, a slew of local non-profits and more: The list of Australian organisations to announce that they're deploying Microsoft's Office 365 software as a service productivity suite is growing day by day. And now, according to iTNews, the Australian National University has added itself to that list.

Now Toll dumps Google Apps rollout, reconsiders SAP plan

Toll has reportedly stopped the rollout of a Google Apps deployment to its staff and is developing a new plan for its proposed SAP-based finance transformation.

ABC claims “massive” Chinese IT attack on Bureau of Meteorology supercomputer

The ABC this morning reported that the weather boffins at the Bureau of Metorology had suffered a "massive" IT attack on its systems, including the supercomputer which it uses for weather forecasting, with the source reportedly being based in China.

Basic Govt IT needs a fundamental rethink

Government systems could be redesigned from the ground-up to make it easy to reorganise, merge and demerge departments, so that a person's email system can be rapidly and easily moved from one agency to another, or the HR information of two departments can be consolidated in a merger at low cost.

Coles is yet another complex cloud case study

We’ve been seeing some very interesting moves from retail giant Coles over the past several years with respect to cloud computing and software as a service adoption. Nothing revolutionary, but solid moves nonetheless.

Budget 2016: Major Police IT projects win funding

Commonwealth law enforcement agencies such as the Australian Federal Police and Crimtrac have won big in this year's Federal Budget in terms of their IT infrastructure programs, with the Government greenlighting a series of major initiatives.

Hills dumped $18m ERP/CRM rollout for

According to a blog post published by today, one of Ted Pretty’s first moves upon taking up managing director role at iconic Australian brand Hills in 2012 was to halt an expensive traditional business software project and call instead.

Digital Transformation Office announces ambitious work program

The Federal Government’s Digital Transformation Office has announced its work program over the initial period of its operation, listing a number of thorny problems that have been plaguing Australians for some time in terms of their interaction with the Federal Government.

PIPE founder, Gordon Bell invest in OrionVM

Australian cloud computing startup OrionVM today revealed it had taken angel investment capital from two high-profile technology sector luminaries: PIPE Networks co-founder Stephen Baxter and US engineer Gordon Bell, of Digital Equipment Corporation fame.

LNP Qld Government kicks off IT cuts

The new LNP Queensland State Government has kicked off a substantial drive to reduce the amount it spends on technology-related goods and services, even ahead of a landmark audit of the state’s public sector technology use, expected to be handed down in December this year.

Data#3 flags job cuts: Read the internal email

There was one little fact which Data#3 didn't disclose to investors during its financial results briefing session this week: Job cuts

Australian Electoral Commission moves website to Amazon Web Services

The Australian Electoral Commission (AEC) has switched to Amazon Web Services (AWS) for the hosting of digital services across all its public-facing websites.

WA sports dept emerges as cloud leader in Azure deployment

The Western Australian Department of Sport and Recreation (DSR) has moved a number of servers to Microsoft’s Azure Cloud to better connect its 17 locations throughout the large state – including some in the more remote Pilbara and Kimberly regions.

Qld picks new whole of government CIO

The Queensland State Government has appointed a new whole of government chief information officer, with industry insiders naming former state CIO Peter Grant as the most likely candidate to have returned to the role.

NSW retailer pays $50k for Microsoft piracy

Microsoft Australia has revealed that PC and laptop retailer The Laptop Factory Outlet, based in South Granville, NSW, will fork out $50,000 in damages for infringing the software giant's copyright, after it Windows Certificates of Authenticity (COA) from used PCs on new PCs loaded with counterfeit software.

Defence wants special ops tablet, smartphone

The Australian Defence Force has gone to market for a solution which will allow it to provide highly secure smartphones and tablets to certain soldiers with the purpose of accessing command systems in the field.

Two mid-size Aussie retailers go NetSuite

Cloud business software vendor NetSuite has revealed that two mid-level Australian retailers, Indian handcraft store Tree of Life and veterinary and pet healthcare supplier Vet-n-Pet, have deployed a broad swathe of its e-commerce and business management software in an effort to get their growing operations under control and scale for growth.

Qld Govt launches ICT action plan, IT dashboard

The Queensland State Government this morning launched an ICT Action Plan containing dozens of measures designed to transform its extremely troubled ICT project and service delivery capabilities, as well as switching on its US-style ICT dashboard designed to give onlookers direct information about the state of its ICT projects.

NSW Govt trials inter-truck safety devices

The New South Wales Government has inked a contract with connected vehicle technology supplier Cohda Wireless, as part of a trial of so-called Cooperative Intelligent Transport Systems (C-ITS) which allow heavy vehicles to communicate directly with each other about their position on the road to help reduce road accidents.

Primus wins million dollar Payless Shoes deal

Independent Australian footwear retail chain, Payless Shoes has inked a million dollar, three-year deal with Primus Telecom, one of Australia’s largest telecommunication carriers. Primus will provide an integrated Voice and Data Network solution that includes a network-based EFTPOS system plus additional hosted services across the retailer's 232 stores and its Sydney-based head office.

CUA claims victory in core banking overhaul

Minor banking and financial services group CUA has claimed victory in an overhaul of its core banking platform conducted with the assistance of Tata Consultancy Services (TCS).

Photos: PM Gillard launches Macquarie datacentre

Prime Minister Julia Gillard launched Macquarie Telecom's new Sydney datacentre in Sydney last week. Macquarie is billing the facility, dubbed the 'Intellicentre 2' as Australia's most advanced high-security datacentre. It cost $60 million to build.

MyNetFone supplies VoIP to Tassie Govt

IP telephony and broadband company MyNetFone this week revealed it had been selected by the Tasmanian Government to supply Voice over IP telephony services to the state, in a three-year deal expected to be worth some $20 million over the period.

Developers prefer Android, says survey

Google’s Android operating system has replaced Apple’s iOS in terms of importance to developers in the Asia-Pacific region in the last 12 months, according to a new survey by independent technology analysts Ovum. However, both still form the core of developer support and almost all developers support both platforms. The survey also reveals that there is increasing interest from developers in Blackberry OS and Microsoft’s Windows phone.

Russian hacker manipulated Australian stockmarket

Police and the national markets regulator yesterday revealed that a Russian hacker had last year broken into IT systems in major Australian financial institutions and manipulated penny stocks for a profit.

Victorian Govt poor at managing telco spend

An audit of three of the Victorian Government's largest agencies has found that none can be confident that they are effectively managing their spend on telecommunications services.

Fujitsu wins grants management deal with Industry Dept

Fujitsu has won a deal to build and implement an end-to-end grants management system for the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science.

Govt admits staff lost IT equipment valued at over $100k

Government employees have cost the taxpayer may thousands of dollars-worth in lost or stolen IT equipment, it has been revealed.

Australia Post trials drone deliveries

Australia Post has announced the it will be the "first major parcels and logistics company" in Australia to trial package delivery by remotely piloted aircraft, also called drones.

Madness? Holmesglen TAFE upgrades GroupWise

It’s been a while since I’ve seen any Australian organisation of any kind have any words of praise for Novell’s ailing GroupWise collaboration suite. The trend is overwhelmingly that organisations are continually ditching it for alternatives, typically Microsoft’s Outlook/Exchange platform. However, if an article published by ZDNet is to be believed, at least one organisation is sticking with the Novell warhorse.

IBM received leaked info during Qld Health payroll bid

The somewhat disturbing revelations from the Commission of Inquiry into Queensland Health’s payroll systems disaster just keep on coming. The Brisbane Times reports today that prime contractor IBM was actually forwarded leaked information that could have helped it win the payroll upgrade contract.

An insider’s look at Aussie app development

Australian iOS and Android app development house Shifty Jelly has published an extensive and heart-felt blog post detailing what it's really like to be an app developer in the cold, hard smartphone/tablet world.

UWS, UTS share datacentre space

Two of Sydney's largest universities have teamed up to source co-location datacentre space from business-focused telecom Macquarie Telecom, in an effort to pool their resources and bettter serve the needs of students and staff.

Xero migrates to Amazon Web Services

New Zealand-based accounting software company Xero has made what it calls the "massive move" to the Amazon Web Services (AWS) cloud platform.

Delimiter files FOI request for Govt ICT Audit

Technology media outlet Delimiter has filed a Freedom of Information request seeking to retrieve the unreleased comprehensive ICT Audit which the Federal Government presented to Finance Minister Mathias Cormann in January this year.

Medibank CIO quits after five months for Suncorp

Banking and insurance giant Suncorp today revealed it had appointed Sarah Harland as its new chief information officer, just five months after the executive took up a similar position at health insurer Medibank Private.

HP CEO Whitman lands in Australia

HP has confirmed its global chief executive Meg Whitman has landed in Australia for a brief visit, in a move that comes as fallout from a bungle at key HP customer the Commonwealth Bank of Australia continues to make itself felt.

Dream or nightmare? IT dept from scratch

It's not often that you see a whole new IT department and associated systems set up from scratch, but that's kind of what appears to be happening at ice cream giant Peters, which was recently bought by a private equity firm and is currently separating its systems from global food manufacturer and ex-parent Nestle.

Westpac dumps desk phones for Samsung Android mobiles

The era of troublesome desk phones tied to physical locations is gradually coming to an end in many workplaces, with mobile phones becoming increasingly popular as organisations' main method of voice telecommunications. But some groups are more advanced than others when it comes to adoption of the trend. One of those is Westpac.

Cisco picks NSN exec to replace Williamson

Global networking giant Cisco today announced that Richard Kitts has been appointed as vice president for Cisco Australia and New Zealand. Kitts will take up the role sometime in mid to late March 2012. The position has been vacant since June 2011.

Finally, Amazon launches Sydney datacentre

After six months of rumours and the launch of several ancillary services down under, US cloud computing giant Amazon Web Services has finally announced the availability of locally-hosted cloud computing services from an Australian datacentre; with prices comparable to those seen overseas.

Big “Legacy” ERP being ripped apart and is almost dead, says Gartner

Enterprise IT analyst firm Gartner has warned that large, monolithic and heavily customised in-house enterprise resource planning systems will be relegated to the status of "legacy ERP" over the next several years, as smaller, nimbler and often cloud computing-based alternatives eat the lunch of this old mainstay of the IT application portfolio.

Defence graduate allegedly leaked secret info to 4chan

If you're a regular user of 4chan, then you're probably aware that the Internet board is notorious for the number of Internet subcultures and memes it has created. What you probably wouldn't expect to find on 4chan is classified Department of Defence documents.

eHealth NSW hiring for yet another CIO

New South Wales' peak electronic health agency NSW eHealth has yet again advertised for a new chief information and chief executive officer, as the latest swing in a revolving door of senior executives.

Medibank nicks ANZ exec to lead IT operations

Health insurer Medibank Private this week revealed it had nicked a senior IT executive from ANZ Bank who had also led IT for the UK’s National Health Service to lead Medibank’s IT operations.

Why do Australians pay more for Office 365?

A great analysis piece was published on local cloud computing media outlet BoxFreeIT last month on why Australians pay more for Microsoft's Office 365 software as a service suite.

Virgin to launch in-flight Wi-Fi next year

Virgin Australia has announced it will introduce inflight Wi-Fi on its domestic and international fleet from next year.

NT dumps failed Fujitsu/SAP project

The Northern Territory Government has decided to dump its broken Asset Management System (AMS) developed by Fujitsu and based on SAP software, after receiving independent advice that it would cost an additional $120 million and five years to fix.

Domino’s Pizza to launch drone deliveries with new tech partner

Domino’s Pizza has announced a new partnership with US-based drone delivery specialist Flirtey to launch what it claims will be the "first commercial drone delivery service in the world".

330k users: Google Apps hits Catholic schools

Search giant Google has revealed its Google Apps software as a service platform has been deployed to some 330,000 students, teachers and administrative staff at Catholic schools across Australia, in one of the largest local known rollouts of the platform so far.

SA politicians debate upgrade of 24-year-old IT platform

South Australia's two major sides of politics have engaged in a war of words over the past week over various pledges to upgrading a 24-year-old IT platform underpinning the state's courts system, which its chief justice says is close to collapse and which needs tens of millions of dollars to replace.

Microsoft to kill off SQL Server 2005 support in April

Software giant Microsoft has revealed it will formally end extended support for its ageing SQL Server 2005 database product in April next year, in news that will most likely not be welcomed by the substantial numbers of Australian organisations struggling to stay up to date with Microsoft’s refresh cycle.

Ansell sees light at the end of ERP tunnel

Australian condom and medical protection giant Ansell this week said it "can see the light at the end of the tunnel" following remediation efforts involving a botched implementation of Oracle’s ERP platform which went live last year and subsequently caused US$13 million to US$15 million worth of lost sales.

NEXTDC opens Sydney datacentre: Photos

Listed datacentre operator NEXTDC this week opened its new ('S1') datacentre in the Sydney suburb of Macquarie Park, at an event attended by Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull as well as customers, partners and the media.

David Boyle appointed NAB CIO

The National Australia Bank has poached Ernst & Young Partner and long-time Accenture executive David Boyle to be its new chief information officer, following the departure of incumbent Denis McGee earlier this year.

Salesforce needs a more anti-social approach

As it continues its mega-push into what it has described as "social enterprise" technologies, risks losing its focus on its core CRM products, particularly as its software as a service model has failed to prove itself in several key markets in Australia.

TechOne’s software goes into 486 Catholic schools

Queensland-headquartered software company TechnologyOne has inked a landmark $15 million deal with the Catholic Education Commission of Victoria (CECV) which will see it deliver enterprise software to 486 schools across the state.

NRMA, Coles reveal sizable Oracle deployments

US technology giant Oracle has revealed that two major Australian organisations, Coles and the NRMA, have chosen Oracle as the basis for new IT projects, using technology ranging from Oracle’s customer relationship management platform to its Exadata Database Machine and Oracle Linux.

ANZ Bank and the false cloud narrative

Cloud, cloud, cloud. It's a topic with which Australia's IT industry is currently obsessed with, and for good reason. The clutch of relatively familiar technologies which have been relabelled and integrated into the new cloud reality have mostly been around for years, but have only recently found the true acceptance with customers that they've been seeking for most of that period.

Breaking Victoria’s IT fail cycle: What not to do

When almost every major IT project has broken its budget and its timeframe, and many have completely failed, after soaking up hundreds of millions of dollars of public money that could have been spent on health, education, cutting down crime or public transport, what happens now? Where does the Victorian State Governments and its technology workforce turn to?

Sydneysiders quit Google to fix … Gmail

What is hilarious and very telling about Google's current corporate culture is that three entrepreneurs felt it necessary to resign from their (no doubt high-paying) jobs in the supposedly innovative GooglePlex in order to push the envelope forward on email, an area which Google itself revolutionised almost a decade ago with Gmail.

Spend-less Shoes replaces dated ERP platform

Speaking of ERP platforms, as we were earlier this morning, news arrived last week that local footwear retailer Spend-less Shoes will deploy a new platform. The company has picked Microsoft’s Dynamics AX 2012 for Retail platform, as detailed in a statement issued by Redmond.

Digital Transformation Office unveils prototype

The Digital Transformation Office (DTO) has revealed the "Alpha" prototype of – the new governmental web platform that aims to present information and services based on usability, rather than the structures of government.

RIM appoints Ray Gillenwater as ANZ MD

BlackBerry maker Research In Motion has appointed Ray Gillenwater Managing Director for Australia and New Zealand. Gillenwater replaces Adele Beachley, who resigned in February.

Flat year for Australian offices of IBM, HP

The Australian divisions of global technology giants IBM and HP have suffered a relatively flat year in terms of revenue and profit growth, despite major initiatives in the rapidly growing cloud computing area by both companies that each would be likely to have hoped would have the potential to significantly boost revenue.

Defence desktop overhaul gets green light

The Department of Defence’s long-awaited desktop PC overhaul project has been given the green light to go ahead in a mass deployment, after a successful trial of 700 users conducted by the project’s main technology vendor Thales.

Immigration dumps Lotus in Microsoft focus

The Federal Department of Immigration and Citizenship has revealed as part of documents associated with a major IT outsourcing initiative that it is midway through the process of migrating off its Lotus Notes/Domino email platform and onto Microsoft's rival Outlook/Exchange system, as well as a number of other modernisation initiatives.

Kill software patents, says Pirate Party

In a call for an overhaul of the Innovation Patent System, Pirate Party Australia has made a submission to the Advisory Council on Intellectual Property (ACIP), challenging the inclusion of software in the current patent system.

CenITex turfs almost all contractors

Those of you with a long-term interest in Victorian Government IT shared services provider CenITex will remember that the agency was several years ago known far and wide for the high rates it was paying its extensive contractor workforce. No more: Most of those contractors are now gone.

‘Cloud’ is now mainstream in Australia’s banking sector

It's finally happened. After years of expressing concern about the privacy risks, regulatory challenges and technical inadequacies of the new clutch of technologies broadly known as “cloud computing”, Australia's financial services sector has embraced the new paradigm wholesale. It's about time.

DHS issues due to ‘chronic’ IT underfunding, says union

Computer malfunctions and other issues at the Department of Human Services are due to "chronic and prolonged underfunding" according to the Community and Public Sector Union (CPSU).

Fed Govt releases motherhood ICT strategy

The Federal Government today published what it described as a new strategy document which would set the overall direction for the Australian Public Service’s use of ICT in the future. However, the document contains few specific details of steps that will be taken, preferring to focus instead on a series of high-level motherhood statements.

Defence plans major ICT projects for 2012

The Department of Defence said last week that it expects to receive Government approval to go ahead with a number of major ICT projects in the next year, ranging from telecommunications to datacentre reform and its long-anticipated overhaul of its PMKeyS human resources platform.

NBN Co appoints John McInerney as CIO

The National Broadband Network Company has appointed former Telstra and HP executive John McInterney to be its new chief information officer starting on 3 December this year, following the departure of inaugural-NBN Co CIO Claire Rawlins in August.

Qld police officer charged with hacking over database access

A Queensland police officer has been charged with hacking, according to the Crime and Corruption Commission (CCC).

SAP Australia wins ‘biggest cloud deal ever’

German software giant SAP has won a substantial deal with the NSW Government’s Trade & Investment agency which it yesterday described as its biggest deployment of its Business ByDesign software as a service suite globally, and its first cloud platform win in the local public sector.

Peregrine deploys Microsoft Power BI in IoT pilot

South Australian convenience retailer Peregrine Corporation has announced plans to pilot an Internet of Things (IoT) and Microsoft Power BI data analytics solution to reduce business risks.

Telstra bets on Windows 10 solution to boost retail engagement

Telstra is rolling out Microsoft Windows 10 on Surface devices at its retail outlets in a move aimed to blur the line between in-store and online sales.

Chinese spy concerns: Key Australian defence agencies ban Lenovo

According to the Financial Review, PCs made by Lenovo have been banned from the “secret” and ‘‘top secret” ­networks of the intelligence and defence services of Australia, the US, Britain, Canada, and New Zealand, due to similar spying concerns as have been published about Chinese networking vendor Huawei.

Red Cloud to build $40m next-gen datacentre in Hobart

Red Cloud Ltd, a data centre services provider, has announced it will build a $40-million, resilient, Tier-3 data centre in Hobart using proven state-of-the-art modular technology.

NSW Govt releases IT anti-corruption guide

Most IT professionals of any seniority are pretty much familiar by now with the sometimes shady tactics used by technology vendors during the procurement process, but just how open is the public discussion around that issue, and what can be done to tighten things up? The answers for many people, until now, have been pretty much “not that open” and “keep a close eye on them”. In an attempt to shine some sunlight on the situation and inject some rigour back into the process, the NSW Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) has this week published a whitepaper on the issue.

University of Newcastle to roll out Windows 10 to 10,000 devices

The University of Newcastle (UON) this week said it would roll out Microsoft Windows 10 to around 10,000 devices across its campuses by the end of 2016.

Q+A: Warwick Hutton, Coca Cola Amatil CIO

This interview with Coca-Cola Amatil chief information officer (Australia) Warwick Hutton was conducted by Toby Bowers, Microsoft Australia Server and Tools Business Group Lead, on the sidelines of the Gartner Symposium on the Gold Coast this week.

Federal education dept in major AWS cloud pilot

It's not often you see examples of cloud computing deployments in major Federal Government departments. With the exception, it turns out, of the Federal Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations, which went a little cloud-crazy before it was split in two after the Federal Election.

SAP considers Aussie datacentre

The Financial Review has reported that German software giant SAP is likely to build an Australian datacentre to provide services to Australian organisations, should new privacy legislation pass that could affect vendors' ability to sell cloud computing services locally from global facilities.

Lacking reality: Sysadmins slam “snooping” claims

Australia's peak representative body for systems administrators has taken an axe to claims published in the Sydney Morning Herald last week that a huge proportion of IT professionals abused their system access to illegitimately read others' email, calling for evidence to be presented to back the claim.

Whole of Govt CIO Steward retires

Australia’s Whole of Government chief information officer Ann Steward this week announced her intention to retire from the public service after seven years leading peak IT strategy agency the Australian Government Information Management Office and long years more in the global public sector generally.

HP’s behind the Boral IT outsourcing

HP has revealed it is the key partner supporting the extensive IT outsourcing plan with diversified materials company Boral revealed in mid-January, with the global technology giant to supply a complete set of products and services as part of the program.

Treasury switches to virtual desktop platform from Nutanix

The Commonwealth Treasury has deployed a virtual desktop platform from Nutanix with the aim of facilitating the delivery of Australia’s economic framework, the Federal Budget.

Brookfield deploys Windows 10 instead of “old” 7 or “jarring” 8.1

Australian company Brookfield Global Integrated Solutions has revealed it is in the throes of a major deployment of Microsoft’s new Windows 10 operating system, taking the opportunity offered by corporate restructuring to go ahead with the upgrade.

NAB fills CIO role as rejigged exec team stares down 2016 migration target

onths after it kicked off a major reshuffle of its IT executives, the National Australia Bank has finally firmed up the technology management team that will lead the institution through a massive Oracle systems upgrade that’s expected to be completed by 2016.

HP’s Caspari quits after just one year

It's been reportedly extremely widely in Australia's technology media over the past 24 hours that HP South Pacific Managing Director David Caspari has resigned his post and will leave the company.

Fortescue deploys HP server stack

Mining giant Fortescue this week revealed it had deployed a broad swathe of technology products and services from diversified global technology vendor HP as it overhauled much of its basic underlying IT server infrastructure.

Privacy risks plague cloud computing, says commissioner

In a recent speech on ‘Privacy risks and potential benefits in the cloud’, Acting Victorian Privacy Commissioner Anthony Bendall has highlighted some of the privacy concerns with cloud computing, particularly in its use by the local government.

Corruption raises its ugly head in Australia’s technology sector

The newspaper alleged, and Leighton has substantially verified, the fact that staff from Visionstream were suspected of aiding Silcar staff in stealing Visionstream tender files relating to a $240 million contract to deploy Optus’s 4G network, which the two contractors were competing to bid. I’ll have a separate article on that situation shortly. What you may not realise is that this not an isolated incident.

CommBank standardises in-house fleet on iPhone

The Commonwealth Bank of Australia has revealed that it will standardise its mobile phone fleet on Apple’s iPhone platform, as it progresses plans to move away from its high-profile softphone-based unified communications strategy recently implemented at its flagship Commonwealth Bank Place facility in Sydney.

IT strategy to lead NSW from “the dark ages”

New South Wales' Coalition State Government late last week revealed a new and wide-ranging strategy which it said was slated to make it "the leader in ICT" when it came to public sector service delivery and the development of the state's technology sector as a whole.

Unisys picks up more Queensland Education work

Queensland's Department of Education, Training and Employment has extended an extremely long-term major IT services contract with supplier Unisys to the value of $29.4 million and simultaneously put a second tranche of IT services work on the market.

ING Direct shifts entire bank platform onto private cloud

Financial services group ING Direct this week revealed it had switched its entire production IT infrastructure onto a private cloud platform, in a move the company claimed was a first for any bank in Australia.

IBM to revamp HCF’s core IT systems

Australian health insurer HCF today revealed it had inked a major multi-million dollar contract with IBM which will see Big Blue "continue" to transform HCF's IT systems, using IBM's iLog and Lombardi software to do so.

Law firm Macpherson Kelley deploys Commvault data platform, flash storage

Australia-based law firm Macpherson Kelley has deployed Commvault's data platform and Pure Storage FlashArray in order to improve information management and boost efficiency.

Microsoft to offer Win10 as a service for businesses

Microsoft has announced that it will soon be offering Windows 10 as a service for enterprises through its Cloud Solution Provider (CSP) channel.

Lenovo’s IBM server + Motorola buys will raise new security questions

Remember when the Financial Review reported in August that devices manufactured by Chinese vendor Lenovo (including its extremely popular ThinkPad line) had been banned from use in the “secret” and “top secret” networks of the intelligence and defence services of Australia, the US, Britain, Canada and New Zealand, because of similar espionage concerns as have been leveled at Chinese networking vendor Huawei? Well, Australian government agencies just got a whole new kettle of fish to worry about, with two key acquisitions by Lenovo which have taken place over the past week or so.

NZ Govt pushes hard into cloud

New Zealand's national Government announced a whole of government contract this morning for what it terms 'Office Productivity as a Service' services. This includes email and calendaring services, as well as file-sharing, mobility, instant messaging and collaboration services. The contract complements two existing contracts -- Desktop as a Service and Enterprise Content Management as a Service.

NSW formalises ‘cloud-first’ with new policy

The New South Wales State Government has formalised its already extremely proactive and positive approach towards the adoption of the new class of cloud computing services within its operations, issuing a new cloud computing policy this week which forces departments and agencies to consider the cloud when undertaking ICT procurements.

ADFA hack a national security failure: expert

According to media reports, a single hacker from the Anonymous group, calling himself Darwinare, released online the names, birthdays and passwords of 20,000 staff and students from a university database at the Australian Defence Force Academy.

The Australian Cloud: Is it delivering on its promises?

Half a decade ago, cloud computing was hyped to the max as a new class of technologies that would deliver radical improvements to the flexibility and agility of both private sector businesses and governments. But a few years down the track, is it delivering on those promises in Australia? We investigate in this extensive feature article.

The end is nigh for Windows XP: Are you ready?

Almost 13 years after its release in October 2001 to a world still in shock after the 9/11 terror attacks, the sun is finally setting on Microsoft’s Windows XP. The operating system has been the software in many home and work PCs but for die-hard users who continue to use XP, danger that way lies.

Logistics group Mainfreight deploys 1,500 Android devices

Tech vendor Zebra Technologies late last week revealed that global logistics provider Mainfreight would deploy some 1,500 Android-based handheld units across Australia and New Zealand, in one of the largest known corporate deployments of the Google technology down under so far.

Woolworths deploys iPads to all store managers

It's raining iPads at retail giant Woolworths, according to an article this morning by The Australian newspaper, which details the company's plans to deploy the Apple tablets to some 890 store managers nationwide.

Fujitsu/SAP project goes off the rails in NT

An IT project go off the rails in Australia? One involving a government department? Off the rails in terms of its project implementation timeframe and its budget? And most of the problem stemmed from its poor project management and governance structures? Who would have thought that this could possibly happen in a million years?

Jobs go as Brisbane outsources to HCL

It’s been coming for a while, but Brisbane City Council has finally bitten the bullet and inked a wide-ranging IT outsourcing contract with Indian firm HCL. According to the Brisbane Times, some 55 jobs are set to go and staff are not happy.

Chromebooks for Port Macquarie school

It’s only been a few weeks since Google’s Chromebooks landed in Australia, but at least one organisation has already started deploying them. According to Computerworld, St Columba Anglican School in Port Macquarie, NSW, is fully into Chrome OS.

Four years later, Westpac will finally shift core banking to Celeriti

Four years after it first started talking about migrating its core banking platform to Celeriti, the next generation of CSC's Hogan system, and five years after it acquired St George, which already uses Hogan, top-tier bank Westpac has finally confirmed imminent plans to start taking action on the issue.

SA Police deploy Android fingerprint scanners

South Australia's police force has committed to deploying a fleet of fingerprint scanners coupled with Android-based smartphones that will allow officers in the field to conduct identity checks in the field instead of taking suspects back to police stations.

“Waste of money”: Sydney Grammar School bans laptops in class

According to at least one school, these new-fangled devices are a "waste of money" and should be banned.

Disastrous patch cripples CommBank

The Commonwealth Bank of Australia is currently reeling with internal chaos and some service delivery problems, following what appears to be a disastrous mis-application of an operating system patch to thousands of desktop PCs and hundreds of servers last week.

Comcare goes cloud for DR

Cloud computing projects in the Federal Government are a little thin on the water these days, despite the fact that the previous Labor administration tried to push for further adoption in the public sector, and despite the fact that cloud is all the rage in state governments at the moment. That's why we're particularly interested in this little gem posted by Australian Government chief technology officer John Sheridan on his blog today.

UNSW publishes detailed cloud/data sovereignty toolkit

The University of New South Wales's widely respected Cyberspace Law and Policy Centre has published what I would consider to be a very useful whitepaper investigating data sovereignty issues related to cloud computing in the Australian context.

Most Qld Govt cloud data is going straight offshore

Queensland's Auditor-General has revealed that the State Government's 'cloud-first' policy has resulted in three quarters of the government data placed into cloud computing platforms going offshore, despite the availability of Australia-based cloud computing solutions.

Griffith Uni dumps Lotus for Gmail

Queensland's Griffith University has become the latest educational institution to shift its staff email accounts into Google's cloud, announcing yesterday that it would ditch IBM's troubled Lotus Notes/Domino suite as it did so.

Macquarie Uni gets deep into virtual desktops

Following on from the news last week that recruitment firm Hudson (and a number of others over the past year or so) is rolling out an extensive desktop virtualisation project internally, comes further detail about a similar (and quite innovative) program at Macquarie University.

University of Melbourne launches new hybrid supercomputer

The University of Melbourne has launched a new supercomputing service called Spartan it says will boost research at the institution.

Even major banks still use archaic Excel spreadsheets for complex tasks

I hope this Suncorp example can serve as a stimulus for other organisations to shift off Excel for these kinds of complex tasks as well.

Defence dumps distributed computing plans

The Department of Defence has taken the unusual step of abandoning plans to go to market for one of the three major tranches of IT outsourcing programs it has been evaluating over the past several years, opting instead to renew a contract in the area with Unisys, despite the fact that it will shortly be forced to re-examine the deal anyway.

Why is Microsoft dropping support for Windows 8.1?

In a move certain to raise the ire of users of Microsoft’s Windows operating system the software giant has announced that next month it will cease support for Windows 8.1. But that operating system is barely eight months old and already an upgraded version of the Windows 8 system that failed to impress many users since its release in 2012.

Two years on, SA Dept wants new social network

South Australia's Department of Premier and Cabinet has started examining new enterprise social networking solutions, just two years after implementing a solution which it has branded as delivering it significant benefits.

Qantas to use NBN, ViaSat to deliver in-flight Wi-Fi from 2017

Qantas is set to introduce inflight Wi-Fi from next year under a partnership with international broadband services provider ViaSat and the NBN network.

GovCMS adoption ‘doubled expectations’ in first year

The government's web content management system GovCMS has reportedly seen more than twice the number of agencies and institutions adopting the service than initially estimated.

NAB to roll out new personal banking platform this month

National Australia Bank (NAB) is to roll out a new personal banking platform in a move it calls "the biggest technology overhaul in the bank’s history".

“Billions”: Hockey greenlights Centrelink core replacement

Treasurer Joe Hockey has strongly hinted that the upcoming Federal Budget will include "billions" of dollars worth of funding for a core systems replacement at the Centrelink division of the Department of Human Services (DHS), in a move that represents one of the Federal Government's most long-awaited and largest IT project approvals.

CSC picks up cloud contract with Fred Hollows

Technology services giant CSC this morning revealed it had signed an extensive agreement to provide cloud computing services (Infrastructure as a Service) to charity the Fred Hollows Foundation.

Someone’s still trying to buy ASG

Australian tier two IT services outfit ASG has raised a few eyebrows over the past few months through its admissions that it's currently being targeted by a mystery buyer. This morning ASG confirmed it was still being targeted.

IBM’s Watson is reportedly expanding into Woodside’s desktops

For most of the time that IBM's Watson artificial intelligence (for want of a better word) system has been around, I suspect many technology journalists such as myself have viewed the platform as something of a toy -- a pet project which Big Blue can use to demonstrate its deep technology research credentials and wow live quiz shows on television. But if this article by iTnews is any indication, Watson is moving past that into something rather more functional.

VIC GOVERNMENT IT IN FLAMES: $1.4 billion over budget, all projects late or failed

Victoria's Ombudsman has handed down one of the most damning assessments of public sector IT project governance in Australia's history, noting total cost over-runs of $1.44 billion, extensive delays and a general failure to actually deliver on stated aims in 10 major IT projects carried out by the state over the past half-decade.

iPad minis replace Windows Mobile at Arnott’s

From iTNews earlier this month comes a rather interesting story about how food giant Campbell Arnott’s has deployed a fleet of several hundred iPad mini tablets to replace legacy Windows Mobile devices being used by its field staff.

WA Govt can’t fund school IT upgrades

In news from The Department of Disturbing Facts, iTNews revealed late last week that Western Australia's Department of Education has run out of money halfway through the deployment of new fundamental IT infrastructure to the state's schools.

Fujitsu wins $140m IT services deal with Gold Coast

Global IT services provider Fujitsu has won the contract to manage Gold Coast’s ICT infrastructure and applications services.

New IT system causes chaos at Cairns Hospital

There is absolutely no doubt that electronic health records system implementations have an extremely chequered history in Australia. Now a new catastrophe along these lines has appeared in Far North Queensland.

NEC expands NSW Police network business

Diversified ICT services business NEC this afternoon revealed it had retained and expanded its communications-related work with NSW Police, with the Japanese company to continue providing voice telephony services to the organisation and expand its remit to include maintenance and support of its data network as well.

Four months later, Govt cloud, IT audit stall

The new Coalition Government appears to have made little progress so far on enacting core elements of its centralised IT policy.

The RBA state-sponsored hack attack (or phishing for a story)

You’ll have seen the fallout this week regarding a so-called “spearphishing” attack on the Reserve Bank of Australia in 2011. As with most media reports on cyber-attacks, this one appears to have been overhyped. So what really happened?

CIO exits Toll as IT outsourcing plan falls in a heap

Toll Group chief information officer John Ansley has resigned from the group just a year and a half after taking up the role, in the wake of the failure of an ambitious IT outsourcing plan.

IBM unveils Watson centre in Melbourne as AI adoption takes off in Australia

Global technology giant IBM last week officially opened a new client experience centre in Melbourne where it will show off its Watson artificial intelligence platform, which is increasingly being adopted by major Australian organisations such as Deakin University, ANZ Bank, Customs and Woodside.

Ninefold launches Aussie rival

Australian public cloud computing company Ninefold has launched a new cloud storage service entitled Business Cloud Drive. This service enables organisations of 100+ users to store, access and share their continually growing amounts of data in a secure, local and easily accessible location.

Telstra launches Cisco’s Android tablet

The nation's largest telco Telstra late last week confirmed it had started offering Cisco's low-profile Cius Android tablet to customers as a complement to their corporate unified communications platforms.

Pia Waugh quits as Senator Lundy advisor

IT industry personality Pia Waugh has announced her decision to resign from her job as policy advisor to Labor Senator Kate Lundy, with a new role in the public service looming.

Hacks focus CIOs on IT security

After the spate of high-profile hacking incidents in 2011, Australian CIOs and IT and security managers are taking no chances this year. According to new research by local analyst firm Telsyte, Australian enterprises will increase their security spending and change their information security strategies in 2012.

Nikoletatos swaps Curtin for ANU

High-profile Curtin University chief information officer Peter Nikoletatos has left his role to take up a similar position at the Australian National University.

Survey: Mainframe usage still growing in Australia

US software giant BMC has released survey findings revealing that mainframe usage continues to grow – both globally and in Australia.

Turnbull’s Department seeks replacement CIO

The Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet (PM&C) is looking for a new Chief Information Officer following the departure of Radi Kovacevic to the DTO.

The datacentres that ate NSW

Cloud computing: Surely it is time for some fresh thinking in NSW government procurement – as taxpayers, don’t we deserve it?

Red Cross last upgraded its IT in 2002

The Australian Red Cross last upgraded its IT infrastructure ten years ago, it has been reported in the wake of news that the organisation will receive a $10 million grant from Microsoft to modernise its infrastructure.

Deloitte surveys state of tech in Aussie business

A national survey conducted by the the Australian Industry Group and Deloitte of Australian chief executives has revealed that business investment in new technologies is resulting in higher productivity, better innovation, improved energy efficiencies and better work safety. The survey involved 540 CEOs across many sectors including manufacturing, services and construction.

Former US Govt CIO in Aussie speaking tour

Former US whole of government chief information officer Vivek Kundra will hit Australia over the next several weeks for a speaking tour that will include events for his new employer, as well as the Australian Information Industry Association.

Melbourne Cup with Atlassian looks fun

Nice little video produced about Melbourne Cup Day at Australian software company Atlassian. Looks like quite a lot of fun was had by all :)

Treasury to develop next-generation desktop

The Commonwealth Treasury has flagged plans to take a significant new step in the ongoing renewal of its internal IT infrastructure through a project that will focus on the delivery of virtual desktop PCs, virtualised applications, secure corporate data to mobile devices and the creation of a corporate "app store".

Too late? WA wants central Fiona Stanley PMO

The Western Australian Government has gone to market for a provider to establish a project management office (PMO) to will coordinate development activities between its problematic Fiona Stanley Hospital build and its wider health department, just weeks after it admitted that the IT systems associated with the hospital had blown out in cost by an amount expected to be between $25 million and $50 million.

Watch out, CIOs — CMOs are stealing chunks of your IT spend

Chief marketing officers are increasingly making technology decisions for their organisations, according to a new study published today by technology analyst firm Telsyte.

Adelaide Uni joins virtual desktop throng

The University of Adelaide this morning revealed it had joined the throng of Australian tertiary institutions making applications and platforms available to their students through desktop virtualisation, in a wide-ranging project which will see some 20,000 licences of Citrix's XenDesktop platform.

NSW Govt opens datacentres to SaaS vendors

The New South Wales State Government has invited technology vendors to register their interest in providing cloud computing-based services from its two new datacentres being constructed to consolidate the IT infrastructure needs of its departments and agencies state-wide.

A great Aussie virtual desktop case study

Virtual desktops, bring your own device computing, integrated datacentre components. These are three of the hottest trends to hit Australia’s enterprise IT sector at the moment, and they all come together in this highly recommended article by iTNews writer Chris Jager looking at a huge virtual desktop implementation at RMIT University.

Gen-i Australia may completely shut down

You couldn’t exactly say that the Australian division of IT services company Gen-i was in rude health, with the company revealing in mid-March that it would sack most of its staff and stop competing for most local contracts, as it shifted focus to only serving Trans-Tasman contracts as per the instructions of its parent Telecom New Zealand. However, according to CRN, things may be even more dire

Up to $50m more for Fiona Stanley hospital IT

The Western Australian State Government has been forced to admit that the IT systems associated with the new Fiona Stanley Hospital being built in the state had blown out in cost by an amount expected to be between $25 million and $50 million, as delays continue to affect the opening of the new flagship facility.

ANZ Bank shifts 260 testing staff to Capgemini

Australia and New Zealand Banking Group late yesterday revealed it would shift 110 Melbourne IT testing staff and a further 250 located in India to employment with outsourcing and consulting company Capgemini, in a bid to deliver what it described as a "step change" in its development operations.

Oracle CEO jets into Australia to reassure customers on support offshoring, flag huge sales...

Fresh off the back of claims that Oracle has just dumped its entire Australian support operation, news has arrived from the Financial Review this week that global Oracle co-chief executive Mark Hurd has landed in Australia.

Deloitte Australia to deploy internal private cloud

One of Australia’s largest corporate consultancies, the local branch of international firm Deloitte, has revealed it will join the widespread migration towards internal private cloud solutions, standardising heavily on the vCloud Suite developed by virtualisation leader VMware.

Telstra cloud console goes offline for two days

Telstra has confirmed that the management console for its corporate cloud platform went offline for some of its customers for two days last week, in the second demonstration in less than a year that the company's cloud computing environment may not yet be as stable as the company would like customers to believe.

IBM selected to provide integration platform for the ANU

The Australian National University (ANU) has announced that IBM has been selected to supply the application integration platform for its Data Integration project.

Investigation finds WA Dept of Health botched Fujitsu core computing contract

Western Australia's Auditor General has released a damning report identifying weakness and inconsistencies in the management of the Centralised Computing Services contract at the Department of Health.

The Suncorp pitch: Core banking overhaul matters

Tier two banking and insurance giant Suncorp has started talking up the benefits of its Oracle-based core banking platform overhaul to the financial markets, following rival the Commonwealth Bank in arguing that its own modernisation and simplification program will bring significant business benefits that will affect its customers and its bottom line.

Aussie Windows counterfeit disks contain malware

Testing conducted by Microsoft Australia has revealed that many counterfeit Windows and Office software disks sold in local markets contain malware, in a revelation which the software giant hopes will stimulate more consumers to buy legit copies of its products.

Defence dumps IBM from datacentre deal

Those of you who keep an eye on the extremely large IT purchasing habits of the Department of Defence will recall that the Department has had a long-running tendering initiative going for what it calls “Centralised Processing” services. The contract has been out to market for some time, with IBM, HP and Lockheed Martin previously being the players in contention. In September that list shrunk down to two, with Defence knocking HP out of the running at that point, and last week the list shrunk again, with Big Blue losing out and Lockheed Martin winning preferred tendered status.

How NAB’s private cloud keeps it carbon-neutral

The National Australia Bank has published a detailed white paper revealing how it used a combination of engineering and information technology tools and processes such as infrastructure on demand to achieve carbon neutrality and push beyond this benchmark into even greater heights of environmental efficiency.

‘Unacceptable’: Cisco’s Chambers tells Obama re NSA interceptions

Long-time Cisco Systems chief executive John Chambers has written a strongly worded letter to US President Barack Obama stating that the company "simply cannot operate" if the National Security Agency continues intercepting its routers and injecting spyware onto them before they are delivered to customers.

Cloud computing player Ninefold shuts down

Ninefold, the Macquarie Telecom-owned cloud computing company which provides infrastructure as a service offerings, has decided to shut down, with its last day of operation being January 30, 2016.

NSW Govt launches Opal card on ferries

However, the new Coalition Government in NSW over the weekend shone a ray of light into the public transport smartcard ticketing situation, with the new Opal smartcard being launched on Sydney ferries, to start with.

Technology and planned obsolescence

Very insightful blog post here by Longhaus managing director Peter Carr, who has made a sophisticated argument regarding planned obsolescence with respect to implementing technology in organisations.

Infrastructure Dept signs ASG for ICT services again

If you were working in Federal Government ICT circles back in 2008, you may recall that the then-Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government signed a $30 million deal (PDF) with local IT services group ASP for a comprehensive range of services ranging from desktop support to servers, laptops, printers and more. Well, news arrived this week that the Department is so happy with ASG — after seven years — that it has re-signed the contract.

EMC, Avaya get new Aussie chiefs

Enterprise IT vendors EMC and Avaya have revealed they have new leaders of their Australian divisions, following the promotion and departure of their local incumbent managing directors.

Fujitsu’s history in Australia: A decent eBook

Some of you may be aware that Japanese technology giant Fujitsu recently celebrated the 40-year anniversary of its launch in the Australian market. As part of the festivities, the company hired credible local technology journalist Graeme Philipson to put together an eBook chronicling that period.

Bridgestone picks Lumias for smartphone fleet

The Australian division of tyre manufacturer Bridgestone has picked Nokia's Windows Phone7-based Lumia 800 smartphone as its platform of choice for its corporate smartphone fleet, with the Finnish company beating rival offerings from the likes of Research in Motion, Apple and Google to the work.

Westpac demotes CIO, makes CTO redundant

Westpac Banking Group has dramatically shaken up its senior IT executive team, slicing some responsibilities away from previous top IT dog Clive Whincup and reportedly making its chief technology officer Jeff Jacobs redundant.

Server timestamps: Abbott was right after all

The Department of Parliamentary Services appears to have cleared Abbott of any wrongdoing in fudging James Ashby-related media release timestamps, admitting that its systems haven't been up to spec.

WA Health told: Hire a goddamn CIO already

A state parliamentary committee has told Western Australia's Department of Health to end four years of acting appointments and hire a permanent CIO, in the wake of news that the lack of such an executive role in the department contributed directly to the fiasco at the state's new Fiona Stanley Hospital, much of which has revolved around poorly delivered IT systems.

Atlassian doubles staff, revenues in 18 months

Australian enterprise software group Atlassian overnight revealed it had approximately doubled its headcount and revenues over the past 18 months, as it rapidly expands its operations internationally on the back of the $60 million in venture capital investment it took in mid-2010.

NSW Govt appoints whole of government CIO

news The NSW Government has appointed respected former Westpac, Macquarie Bank and Woolworths IT executive Damon Rees to the newly created role of whole...

“Alarming” amount of end of life software in Vic Govt: Microsoft + Oracle in...

Victoria’s acting Auditor-General has blasted the state’s departments and agencies for continuing to use IT systems which have reached their end of life state, as well as for ignoring its ongoing recommendation that the state put together a whole of government disaster recovery framework.

Microsoft launches update for Dynamics CRM, hints at IoT future

Microsoft has announced the release of the Dynamics CRM Spring 2016 update, along with a preview date for its new product, Connected Field Service, which will offer the option to monitor Internet of Things devices.

New Microsoft Surface + Lumia devices to hit Australia before Christmas

Microsoft’s new range of Surface convertible table devices will launch in Australia in mid-November, the global technology giant announced this week, as well as a clutch of new Lumia-branded handsets to keep Windows mobile enthusiasts happy.

ICT Audit largely clears Federal Govt of problems

A comprehensive ICT audit of the Federal Government's ICT operations has largely found they are sound and performing to required standards, with expenditure within appropriate levels and only a small proportion of major ICT projects at risk.

ThreatMetrix acquires Aussie security firm TrustDefender

Australia based TrustDefender, a specialist in secure browsing technologies and malware protection, has been acquired by US-based ThreatMetrix, a provider of cybercrime prevention solutions. Consolidated under the ThreatMetrix brand, the company will operate in the US, Australia and Europe with its headquarters in San Jose, California.

Uni of Sydney deploys ThinkPad Tablet 2 studios

The University of Sydney has successfully completed a trial of Windows 8-based Lenovo ThinkPad Tablet 2 devices in dedicated student spaces on several of its campuses and is seeking to deploy the devices more widely to assist in generating better learning outcomes.

Barden Produce deploys VMware’s vCloud Air

Australian veg wholesaler Barden Produce has announced a move to VMware's vCloud Air to bring about a more flexible and agile business model.

Qld Govt censors ICT audit, but makes progress on ICT strategy

Over the past month, the Queensland State Government has repeatedly declined to release the whole of government ICT audit it conducted last year. However, there are signs the state is making progress on plans to address wide-spread problems in ICT project and service delivery which have bedevilled many of its departments and agencies over the past half-decade.

NSW Govt releases new ICT investment policy

news The New South Wales State Government has released a public policy document which it intends will help NSW Government agencies make better investment...

US tech visionary Harper Reed to keynote Cisco Live

Technology giant Cisco has unveiled the line-up for its Cisco Live confab in Melbourne next week, with US-based technology evangelist Harper Reed to feature as one of the main keynotes, alongside several senior global Cisco executives.

Uni of New England opens Lync to 23,000

Microsoft has revealed that Armidale's University of New England has licensed its Lync unified communications platform for the use of 23,000 students and staff, in a deployment which appears to set a new record for the use of the technology in Australian educational institutions and which opens UNE's remote learning doors further.

A govt IT insourcing success story

With all of the IT disasters that have come out of the Victorian State Government recently, sometimes it’s hard to believe that anything has gone right recently in the state with regards to government technology use. That’s why we were pleasantly surprised to read this case study detailing how utility Yarra Valley Water has successfully switched away from an outsourcing model and brought its IT support in-house.

Rumours swirl around ANZ Indian IT sale

According to the Hindu Business Line, one of the country’s main business papers, top-tier Australian bank ANZ may be looking to sell its Bangalore operations to Indian IT outsourcer Wipro, which has long had a relationship with ANZ.

DFAT lifts lid on huge IT infrastructure upgrade

The Federal Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade has kicked off a huge outsourcing initiative which is slated to see several hundred million dollars ploughed into a substantial upgrade of the department's far-flung global fundamental IT infrastructure, including both telecommunications and desktop platforms.

802.11ac to wire up your garage datacentre? Why not?

Fascinating blog post this week from MacTalk founder and all-round geek Anthony Agius, who chronicles his attempts to use two 802.11ac routers to link his new garage-based server farm to his house network.