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Victorian licences to get CVV style security number following cyber breaches

Victorians are set to get new licences after VicRoads announced it would be adding a security number in light of the recent cyber attacks.

user icon Daniel Croft
Tue, 06 Dec 2022
Credit: VicRoads
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VicRoads has said that 942,000 Victorian licence holders were affected in the recent Optus data breach, all of which will be issued a new licence to protect their identity and personal details.

“The government has commenced issuing redesigned licences to these individuals for free. These licences will feature a card number prominently displayed on the back of the licence, allowing for two-step verification,” said VicRoads in a statement.

“This is the first step in providing an added layer of protection for licence holders.”

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Up to 9.8 million former and current Optus members had their data stolen. VicRoads has said that it will be requesting that Optus compensate them for the cost of replacing the licences.

“We will request Optus repays the cost of the new licences to the Victorian government,” added VicRoads.

The new licences will sport a new design and an additional security feature, with a number on the back not unlike the CVV number found on the back of a credit card.

The 342,000 Victorians directly affected by the breach will be the first to get the new licences, which will arrive by the end of the year. The last 600,000 can expect them to arrive in the first quarter of next year.

Anyone applying for a license will also receive one of the new cards, as VicRoads attempts to “implement this additional protection for all 5 million Victorian licence holders”.

The change has been slammed by cyber security professional Simon Smith, who has said for the system to work, all licences would need to be replaced. With licences being valid up to a decade, some Victorians would be waiting 10 years.

“For the system to have any purpose, there needs to be both replacement of all Victorian licences by a set date and centralised enforcement, protection and validation of the verification data on an ongoing basis.”

He also said that the verification number would not provide adequate security.

What good is a verification number if it, too, is stored with the data that gets breached? It certainly is not a form of 2FA,” added Smith.

It is not really specified how the main database will be protected, how validations will occur for existing companies, and how mismatches and existing licences holder queries will be treated.”

NSW has also provided a way for Optus customers to replace their licences. Customers are required to pay $29 for the new licence, which will then be reimbursed by Optus.

Daniel Croft

Daniel Croft

Born in the heart of Western Sydney, Daniel Croft is a passionate journalist with an understanding for and experience writing in the technology space. Having studied at Macquarie University, he joined Momentum Media in 2022, writing across a number of publications including Australian Aviation, Cyber Security Connect and Defence Connect. Outside of writing, Daniel has a keen interest in music, and spends his time playing in bands around Sydney.

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