Futures, Microsoft’s online technology policy portal, keeps you up-to-date with the latest developments in an evolving industry. With viewpoints from government leaders, industry practitioners and technology specialists.
Record software donations
Microsoft Australia reached new heights with the Software Donation Program last financial year donating more than $50 million dollars’ worth of software to over 3,300 community organisations.
Microsoft today welcomed the Turnbull Government’s Innovation Statement that proposes around 20 new measures to accelerate Australia’s innovation ecosystem to ensure Australia can remain globally competitive.
“I am delighted to see this package of policies and reforms because a comprehensive suite of measures will be required if we are going to be able to compete with innovation leaders like the US, Israel, the UK and Singapore,” said Pip Marlow, Managing Director, Microsoft Australia.
Microsoft commenced a project called Joined-Up Innovation almost two years ago to make the case for a national, whole of ecosystem approach.
“We called for Government vision and leadership, we called for policies that would encourage mobility, we focused on the importance of culture in driving innovation within SMEs and Government, and we recognised the need for the right skills and talent to be developed in Australia.”
Microsoft Australia is proud to join others around the world in commemorating the UN’s International Day of Persons with Disabilities today.
This year’s theme is Inclusion Matters: Access and Empowerment for People with Disabilities – which resonates strongly with our ambition at Microsoft.
Our mission is to empower every person and organisation on the planet to achieve more. Our CEO, Satya Nadella specifically called out inclusion as one of the key attributes of the growth mindset needed to deliver on this mission.
Microsoft recently took 20 leading Australian politicians and business people to Boston and neighbouring Cambridge in the US state of Massachusetts. The group visited local facilities and met a wide range of experts to learn firsthand how the state is reinventing itself as a major innovation centre to rival Silicon Valley and other innovation hotspots around the world.
We led the tour as part of our on-going Joined-Up Innovation campaign, which addresses Australia’s urgent need to strengthen and future-proof its economy through world-leading innovation. Click here to find out more about what we learned about what Boston is doing that we could learn from and read the full report.
Today, the Federal Opposition Leader, Bill Shorten announced that if Labor was to form Government after the next election, it would establish a $4.5 million grant program to fund initiatives that inspire girls to learn code.The proposed grant program would support a range of industry-led or grassroots initiatives that have emerged to encourage young people, particularly girls, to explore coding.
Today, we are thrilled to announce Microsoft Australia’s Windows 10 #UpgradeYourWorldAU community investment of US$500,000 cash, to be shared equally across ten nonprofits that are making a real difference to our local communities. We have selected the first five local nonprofits who will each receive a donation of US$50,000. We now want Australians to have their say, and help us to crowdsource the remaining five local nonprofits to receive a donation!
At Microsoft, we are committed to celebrating those who inspire others and make an impact in their community and around the world. Today’s Australian launch is part of the global Windows 10 #UpgradeYourWorld initiative, a year-long initiative that celebrates people and organisations doing great things, with a total global investment of US$10 million.
To nominate an Australian organisation, jump on social media, use the hashtags #UpgradeYourWorldAU and #Vote, plus tag your favourite nonprofit on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.
Today, Minister for Justice the Hon. Michael Keenan and AFP Commissioner Andrew Colvin encouraged Australians to continue their efforts to locate those still missing at the launch of International Missing Children’s Day 2015.
The day will be recognised globally on Monday 25 May, with this year’s focus being on the safe location and recovery of children who have been abducted by a parent.
Commissioner Colvin said the location and recovery of missing children, including those taken by a parent, is often a collaborative law enforcement and community effort.
The AFP Facebook page is encouraging the community to replace their profile picture with a ‘Help bring them home’ white balloon to raise awareness of missing children on the day. Visit the Help Bring Them Home website to release a balloon of a missing child in support.
Parents were also alerted to the Australia Police Child ID App, which has been developed to assist parents immediately provide their child’s information to the police in the event that a child does go missing.
This week marks the start of this year’s National Cyber Security Awareness Week. Microsoft is proud to be a continued supporer of this important initiative from the Australasian Consumer Fraud Taskforce.
If you haven’t stopped and thought about how you keep your private information secure, chances are you could be leaving it wide open for scammers to steal. When scammers get your details, they can use them for all sorts of identity crime such as making unauthorised purchases on your credit card, or using your identity to open accounts such as banking, telephone or energy services, take out loans or carry out other illegal business under your name.
Patching of security vulnerabilities is the single most important activity any organisation can undertake to secure their information systems. Having modern, up-to-date and fully patched software is essential to providing a foundation on which other security controls can be overlaid. This is reflected by Australian Signals Directorate guidance that specifically calls out patching of operating systems and applications as two of the Top 4 mitigations against cyber intrusion.
I’d like to share with you some important news about the Certification of Microsoft Office 365 and Microsoft Azure by the Australian Signals Directorate (ASD). Today, ASD established a Certified Cloud Services List and published a revised Information Security Manual (ISM) that provides a streamlined and effective way to verify the security of cloud services.
We know that considerations around security, privacy and compliance are essential to how you evaluate and realise value from cloud services. So I’d like to share with you some recent progress Microsoft has made in this regard as we announce the availability of Microsoft Office 365 and Microsoft CRM Online from local Australian data centres.