NSW DFSI's Rachael is improving government's cyber security network and creating a new strategy to protect digital information

NSW DFSIs Rachael joins important cyber security team

NSW DFSI's Rachael joins important cyber security team

Australia’s only female GCSIO, Dr Maria Milosavljevic has hired four women into her cyber team including Rachael Fraher seconded from NSW DFSI Policy.

“Being a senior female leader in any relatively technical area means you’re often the only woman in the room, or one of a small number,” says Maria. “But that doesn't mean that you need to be any less heard. Nor does it mean you need to be aggressive to be heard. You just need to have something compelling to say. Let your contributions speak for themselves.”

Protecting the government with cyber security

Over the past year Maria has been working to improve the government’s cyber security network and create a NSW cyber security strategy through collaborations with the NSW Government, industry leaders, research groups, and foreign governments.

“Like any other government should be, we are focused on ensuring that we protect the digital information and services that NSW citizens rely on. The strategy covers a broad range of activities and it also addresses many of the previous recommendations from the NSW Auditor General," says Maria.

Creating a team of female experts

Part of this collaborative approach includes building a team for which the department has gained funding. "That’s exciting – it’s always a great feeling to build a new team with a new vision. But they will be walking into an extremely busy area because we are all very focused on delivering our vision which is a cyber safe NSW. And we are well into delivering the strategy already," says Maria.

Although the cyber industry is usually male-dominated, unsurprisingly for Australia's only female GCSIO, Maria decided to break conventions and hire four women to the team, one of whom is NSW DFSI's Rachael.

“When I first started, I hired an executive support officer and a policy officer from the department was seconded across. Three women. Then, much to my surprise, we managed to find an incredibly talented cyber security technical analyst in the refugee program – her skills were so valuable and we were both very happy to find each other. Four women. Then I asked for secondees from across government and the first one was a woman. Five women, zero men," says Maria.

“It was at this point that I asked for a team photo as soon as possible. I knew that this couldn't last and wanted to capture it for the memory. I figured we were probably unique globally. And completely unplanned of course. Now we have a bunch of wonderful men in our team and our team culture benefits from incredible diversity including some graduates with their fresh thinking and several countries of birth across the team.” 

Join talented women like Rachael

NSW DFSI offers a wide selection of career paths to capable individuals and is constantly looking for employees who share their values and who are as diverse as the community they serve. Find out more about their current job openings now.

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