Adam Spencer, Drawcard MC

A math genius, radio and television presenter, author and TEDx speaker whose talk attracted over two million views, Adam has interviewed bestselling authors, astronauts, CEOs, and CIOs of some of the world’s largest companies, winners of Nobel Prizes, and every Prime Minister on-stage since Gough Whitlam, among others. 

Adam Spencer has been a breakfast radio announcer on Triple J and ABC Sydney, TV personality on everything from comedies Good News Week and The Glasshouse to weekly sports wrap The Back Page, and is a member of the Sleek Geeks Science Team with Dr Karl Kruszelnicki.

Brendan Dowling, Ambassador for Cyber Affairs and Critical Technology

Mr Dowling will have a key role in the development of Australia’s Cyber Security Strategy for 2023-2030, which will enhance our role as a trusted and influential global cyber leader. The strategy recognises that a whole-of-nation approach to cyber is required and that cyber affairs are an integral element of Australia’s foreign and strategic policy.

Mr Dowling has had a distinguished career in cyber affairs, most recently serving as First Assistant Secretary, Cyber and Critical Technology Coordination Centre within the Department of Home Affairs. Mr Dowling has also served in a senior role in Australia’s Embassy in the United States.

Garry Bentlin, Group Director of Cybersecurity, Nine

Garry brings more than two decades of security experience to the company, honed in IT environments across critical infrastructure and energy, mining, financial services, airlines and transport, major sporting events, and government. His key strengths include developing enterprise cybersecurity visions and implementing programs of work to protect organisations’ data, people and systems. Garry was most recently a partner with PwC Australia, with previous roles including Chief Information Security Officer at TransGrid, national cybersecurity director at Deloitte, and various security positions at IBM. He is also currently a member of the executive advisory board for Cyber (EABC) at Deakin University.

Mallika Sathi, Vice President, Cyber & Intelligence and Digital Identity, Mastercard

Mallika has extensive experience in digital payments, banking, cybersecurity and innovation. She was appointed to her current role in 2018, to help businesses counter the growing threat of scams, online fraud and cyber attacks by leveraging cutting edge technologies. Prior to joining Mastercard, Mallika was the Head of Payments at PayPal. She has also held leadership roles in strategy, product management and commercial partnerships at Visa, Commonwealth Bank, Ernst & Young and Westpac. Mallika has 25 years experience across banking, eCommerce, management consulting and technology sectors.

 

Laura Christie, Government Chief Information & Digital Officer, Deputy Secretary Digital.NSW, NSW Department of Customer Service

Laura is an experience public sector leader having spent 15 years in roles in the NSW Government, Commonwealth Government and the not-for-profit sector. Her expertise and achievements were acknowledged in 2018 as the recipient of a Public Service Medal for outstanding public service to policy development and reform initiatives. Prior to leading Digital.NSW, Laura led Service Delivery for Service NSW, where she was responsible for the Service NSW shopfronts and Contact Centre (13 77 88), leading over 3500 staff. She joined Service NSW as Executive Director Partnerships where she was instrumental in providing Service NSW with dedicated cluster and agency partnership support. Before Service NSW, Laura was the founding Executive Director for Office of the Secretary at the Department of Finance, Services and Innovation and held various roles at the NSW Department of Premier and Cabinet and the Commonwealth Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet.

Sally Pfeiffer, First Assistant Secretary, Department of Home Affairs

Sally joined the Australian public service in 2002 before moving to the Department of Home Affairs (then Immigration) in 2007. She has had a varied career in the Department of Home Affairs including IT, major procurement and contract management, immigration status resolution, character and cancellations program, the refugee and humanitarian visa program and the Counter Foreign Interference Coordination Centre. In November 2023 Sally was appointed as First Assistant Secretary, Industry Partnerships and Infrastructure Policy (IPIP Division) within the Cyber and Infrastructure Security Group. IPIP Division is responsible for critical infrastructure security policy.  It provides policy advice to the Australian Government on critical infrastructure and transport security matters and manages the policy for, and the implementation of, the relevant legislative frameworks. 

 

Dr Ian Oppermann, Chief Data Scientist, Department of Customer Service

Dr Ian Oppermann is the NSW Government’s Chief Data Scientist working within the Department of Customer Service, and Industry Professor at University of Technology Sydney (UTS). He is a Digital Economy thought leader and a highly-cited researcher about big data, broadband enabled services and the impact of technology on society. Ian has 30 years’ experience in the ICT sector and has led organisations that deliver products and outcomes that have reached millions of people globally. He has held senior management roles in Europe and Australia.

Dr. Rebecca Wynn [USA], Top CISO to Watch 2023; Threat Watch Show Host

Dr. Rebecca Wynn is among the world’s top CSOs and Risk and Compliance practitioners and visionaries. Rebecca has been recently awarded Top CISO to Watch in 2023 [Cyber Express], Top Inspirational Cybersecurity Leader 2021 [Cyber Magazine], Who’s Who in Cybersecurity 2021 [Cyber News], and Top 100 Tech Women 2021  [Technology Magazine]. She is lauded as a game-changer who is ahead of the curve when developing and enforcing cybersecurity and privacy best practices and policies for Fortune 100 companies. Ranking within the top 1% views on LinkedIn, she is renowned for being a gifted polymath, having deep understanding of current cyber security challenges and privacy issues. She has a proven track record of taking companies to the next level of excellence in across many industries in both public and private sector. An accomplished author, Dr Wynn is also the recipient of notable awards including SC Magazine’s List of “Women in IT Security – Top Influencers for 2018, 2018 Top 10 Women in Cybersecurity (Cyber Research Data Bank),  Women in Technology Business Role Model of the Year and more than 10 United States Department of Defense certificates of achievement. She also owns 4 copyrights and 70-plus professional articles and presentations on cybersecurity, cyber ethics, technology governance, security programs, privacy, risk mitigation, and healthcare security, among other topics. 

Stephen Bennett, Global Chief Information Security Officer, Domino's Pizza Enterprises

Stephen has over 30 years of experience in the security and technology space, working with large enterprise organizations in various market sectors, such as Gaming, Law Enforcement, Healthcare, and Retail, to build and enhance their cybersecurity capabilities. Currently working as the Global Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) he plays an instrumental role in securing and maintaining the integrity of Domino’s Pizza Enterprises Limited (DPE), the largest master franchisee of the Domino’s brand outside the US, encompassing 12 regions across Asia Pacific and Europe and supporting over 3,700 stores. In the last financial year, DPE served a staggering 180 million pizzas, amounting to over seven pizzas sold every second. With 80% of all orders placed through their digital platform, Stephen’s work in safeguarding customer data and ensuring a seamless user experience is particularly crucial.

Sascha Thiel, Executive Tribe Lead, Head of Business Platform Services & Authentication, ANZ Bank

Sascha, a highly accomplished digital and technology executive in the financial services sector, currently serves as Executive, Head of Business Platform Services. Leading a team of 300, her focus is on ensuring operational efficiency and delivering secure digital solutions. Sascha excels in strategic business planning, technology strategy, and adeptly navigating digital transformations within regulated environments. In her previous role, Sascha played a pivotal role in reshaping customer authentication strategies. With a robust background in senior management at ANZ, she led technology teams across corporate and commercial banking to global digital. Her achievements include initiating and delivering end-to-end technology services, crafting digital strategies, and successfully executing enterprise mobility solutions. Beyond her technical proficiency, Sascha is a passionate advocate for fostering growth and cultivating high-performing teams, making her a standout leader in the realm of access and identity within the financial services industry.

Anna Aquilina, CISO, University of Technology, Sydney

Anna has been working for over 25 years in a variety of roles, primarily with government and in national security/cyber security related areas. Her introduction to cybersecurity was in 2011 when she was in the Cyber Command in the Serious Organised Crime Agency (UK) as the UK started to take the cyber threat much more seriously. Those years were spent helping understand the cyber threat landscape more fully, engaging in disruption planning and activities and building up capability and capacity across the agencies.

She has spent a considerable amount of time in intelligence agencies, law enforcement and other various bits of government in the UK and Australia, and is really enjoying the Higher Education sector which she joined February 2021 when she joined UTS as CISO.

Elena Chan, General Counsel and Chief Risk Officer, Beforepay Group

Elena has over 15 years’ experience in the financial services industry. Prior to joining Beforepay, Elena spent nine years at Westpac holding various business, legal and risk roles. Elena was the Head of Group Transformation Office, Head of Data Transformation & Integration and the Head of Business Controls for Group Data. She also headed-up the Financial Markets legal team for Westpac’s Institutional Bank for several years.

Prior to joining Westpac, Elena worked at a number of law firms and corporations in Australia and the United Kingdom, including Morgan Stanley, Simmons & Simmons, Henry Davis York (now Norton Rose Fullbright), and PwC. She has extensive experience in advising financial institutions across a full range of legal, risk and compliance matters.

Stephanie Crowe, First Assistant Director-General Cyber Security Resilience, Australian Signals Directorate

Stephanie is head of the ACSC’s Cyber Security Resilience Division, which is responsible for delivering technical programs, services and publications across government and industry, as well as enabling the uplift and hardening of critical networks. Steph’s cyber security career spans over 10 years – she has conducted various roles within junior operational ranks up to her most recent roles in senior leadership positions. Stephanie has led the ACSC’s cyber threat intelligence and incident management functions and designed programs to enhance Australia’s cyber security situational awareness, national threat picture and incident response capabilities. Stephanie has been involved in cyber security efforts supporting key national events such as e-Census, elections and G20, and in facilitating national exercise programs. She has also directed Government’s technical response to numerous nationally-significant cyber security incidents.

Dave Cowan, Chief Information Security Officer, Challenger Limited

Dave has 25 years of experience in the IT/Information Security industry and has worked in Australia, New Zealand, and the UK for leading international companies.

Dave is currently the Chief Information Security Officer at Challenger an investment management company with a vision of providing its customers with financial security for retirement. Dave is responsible for the strategic leadership and direction of the Information Security, Technology Risk and Assurance, Identity Access Management and Business Resilience functions across the organisation, ensuring the people, processes, and technology are all operating effectively to mitigate the risk of security incidents impacting Challenger and the wider ecosystem.

Daniela Fernandez, Head of Information Security, Paypal; CSO30 2023

With over 19 years’ experience in Information Technology, Daniela is a cyber security and analytics leader who values integrity, diversity of thought, continuous learning, sense of achievement and ensuring a healthy work/life integration. Currently Daniela is the Head of Information Security at PayPal Australia where she focuses on making security a business enabler, helping PayPal to achieve their mission to democratise financial services while ensuring that PayPal Australia delivers secure products to customers and meets local regulatory requirements. Before that, Daniela was Director of Cyber Risk and Strategy. Prior to Deloitte, Daniela worked in multiple roles at CBA, across protective services, intelligence team, fraud detection and cyber security. Her last role at CBA was Executive Manager, Business Information Security Officer. Daniela is a recent winner of the CSO30 Australia 2022 & 2023 awards recognising excellent in cyber security initiatives.

Scott Leach, Vice President Sales, Varonis

Scott Leach heads Varonis’ business in the Asia-Pacific region, overseeing operations in key markets such as Australia, Singapore, India and Japan. With a focus on expanding Varonis’ regional footprint, Scott steers a dedicated team of cybersecurity professionals on a mission to help organisations, including law firms, strengthen their data protection strategies. Prior to Varonis, he led cybersecurity initiatives at Secureworks and spent 14 years at Dell EMC, focusing on building out a global business.

Holding degrees in Computer Science and Chemistry from the University of Wollongong, Scott is based in Melbourne and brings a wealth of experience to discussions on law firm data security.

Ben Young, Head of Fraud, Westpac

Ben Young is the Head of Fraud for Westpac bank. His team research and operate Westpac’s key fraud protection processes for the ~25 million transactions processed each day by the bank (most particularly around credit cards, internet banking, branch and applications for credit). 

Ben has been intimately involved in Westpac’s fraud processes for the past 15 years and has worked in various data led risk processes for 25 years.