While Optus fails to do much at all communicating with customers, in particular the most affected – those 10,000 whose details were already released by aleged hackers, the Australian Federal Police aren’t mucking around.

The AFP along with State and Territory Police departments across Australia have formed the operation to ensure the identity protection of the more 10,200 people who’s data was supplied as evidence the alleged hacker behind a $1million ransom was legitimate.

A Joint Partnership is being formed between law enforcement and the private sector to lessen the threat of identity fraud on those people and many more.

First they will identify those 10,000 or more people – something Optus has not bothered to do.

For them there will be online forum monitoring and dark web monitoring to check for exploitaton of their information.

The taskforce will also engage with the Financial services industry to detect any criminal activity related to the breach, and keep an eye on ReportCyber to see if ther are any links between exploitations and of course, most importantly attempt to disrupt and idenitfy the criminals.

The AFP’s Assistant Commissioner Cyber Command Justine Gough said it may not be just the 10,000 names “Australian law enforcement agencies are working together and with industry partners to actively monitor any subsequent misuse of the data,’’.

“Australian law enforcement are aware of current criminal activity attempting to target and exploit impacted Optus customers that have been the subject of this data breach.

“Operation Guardian should send a clear warning to cybercriminals. The AFP, state and territory police plus other agencies through the JPC3 have a laser-like focus, plus a significant number of resources and legislative powers, to identify cybercrime targets.”

The AFP does credit Optus with their early engagement with Law enforcement and continued full co-operation.

Advice from the AFP today for the public is to :

  • Look out for any suspicious or unexpected activity across your online accounts, including your telco, bank and utilities accounts. Make sure to report any suspicious activity in your bank account immediately to your financial institution;
  • Do not click on any links in any email or SMS claiming to be from Optus;
  • If someone calls claiming to be from Optus, police, bank or another organisation and offers to help you with the data breach, consider hanging up and contacting the organisation on its official contact details. This can be a scammer calling using your personal information.
  • Never click on any links that look suspicious and never provide your passwords, your bank’s one time pins, or any personal or financial information, and.
  • If people call posing as a credible organisation and request access to your computer, always say no.

ID Care, the organisation that provides support services after people suffer identity fraud, say they have had more than 10,000 requests for information from the public since the Optus attack. There’s a lot of work ahead for a lot of organisations.

Finally, the AFP advise that if you believe you are a victim of Cybercrime, report it to ReportCyber atcyber.gov.au