Darwin Bureau Chief Matt Cunningham says there are a lot of “silent victims” when it comes to cyber-attacks in Australia.

The Australian is reporting a bid to stop a cyber-crime wave affecting Australian government agencies, businesses and hospitals will see hackers faced with tougher penalties.

“I know friends who lost $25,000 through their business being hacked and that had a devastating impact on them,”

“But a lot of people are sort of not game to speak up because I think they feel a little bit ashamed when they have been hacked, a bit ashamed that they’ve fallen into the trap.

“It’s great to see the AFP, under the Commissioner Reece Kershaw – who I have to say does a terrific job – cracking down on this issue.”

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