Latitude Financial Services data breach
The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) is aware of a cyber incident impacting Latitude Financial Services.
Copies of approximately 103,000 identity documents have been stolen from Latitude Financial. This includes a small number of passports.
Latitude Financial Services is contacting impacted customers directly and continues to investigate the matter to determine the full extent of the cyber-attack.
Foreign passports were also compromised through this cyberattack. If Latitude Financial Services have advised you that your foreign passport information was compromised, you should contact the government that issued the passport for advice on what to do.
Impacted passports are still safe to use for international travel. Your passport number cannot be used to obtain a new passport. Robust controls are used to protect passports from identity takeover, including sophisticated facial recognition technology. Further information on how your passport may be impacted can be found on the APO website(link is external).
Advice on safeguarding your personal information can be found on the APO’s webpage on protecting against scams and identity theft(link is external).
Customers can also seek help from IDCare(link is external), a not-for-profit organisation that specialises in providing advice and support to the Australian community in responding to identity theft.
Advice on how to protect yourself and your family from cyber security incidents is available on the Australian Cyber Security Centre’s (ACSC) webpage at: www.cyber.gov.au(link is external)
For more information, visit our FAQ.
Direct Aid Program projects selected in 2022-2023
Thank you to all who applied for 2022-2023 Direct Aid Program Funding support. We received 207 applications in total and have selected the following thirteen applications. It was very challenging for us to select the list for funding out of highly competitive proposals. We thank organisations that argued passionately for their projects but who were unsuccessful this time.
Congratulations to the thirteen organisations that have received grants for 2022-2023 Direct Aid Program. These organisations come from a wide range of sectors (health, disability inclusiveness, environment, gender and human rights, disaster management) and regions (Ulaanbaatar, Bulgan, Govi Altai, Sukhbaatar and Bayankhongor).
The successful applicants are listed below:
1. National Center for Maternal and Child Health: Enhancing pediatric care through training by physicians tailored education program of Australia
2. Save the Children Japan, Mongolia Office: Strengthening capacity of pediatric trauma care and child first aid responses in rural areas
3. National Institute for Disaster Management: Integrated data collection middle ware system in disaster management
4. Red Cross Branch of Govi-Altai: Providing shelter for victims of violence
5.Little Scientist NGO: Capacity building for teachers and trainers to assist children with special needs
6.Bayankhongor Governor’s Office: Medical health care services to herders in Bayankhongor province
7. We are Smart Community: Responsive Arkhangai
8. Christina Nobel Children’s Foundation: Empowering youth with knowledge and information about sexual and reproductive health
9. National Center Against Violence: Friendly kit
10. Tugs Tsetseikhen: Green future
11. Mongolian Blind Football Federation: Improve social awareness of blind football and its existence
12. Business Development Center of Uvurkhangai Province: Sustainable labour support income and job generation in Uvurkhangai province
13. Bulgan Manlailal: Increased local awareness to prevent sexual abuse of girls and protect children in Bulgan province
Subscribing to Smartraveller
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You can now also subscribe to the new SMS service - by supplying your mobile number – to receive critical alerts in the event of a crisis overseas.
In a crisis, Smartraveller will activate a crisis page on its website. It will make it easier for you or someone you know to contact the Australian Government if you need help. It will supplement the consular emergency hotline.
Visit www.smartraveller.gov.au to subscribe or connect with Smartraveller on Facebook and Twitter.
Australian nationals eligibile for Mongolian e-visa
Australian nationals are now eligible to apply for a Mongolian e-visa through evisa.mn/main. Applicants for an e-visa are no longer required to visit the Mongolian Embassy in Canberra and will receive their e-visa by email.
Through the electronic system, applicants will be able to obtain visas for the purposes of tourism (K2), participating in sports, culture and arts events (K4), and transit (K6).
Visit evisa.mn/main for more information.
Strengthening SMEs and introducing digital marketing in Mongolia
Throughout the world, Australia Awards alumni make positive changes in a variety of markets and sectors. One Mongolian alumna who should be highlighted is Sarantuya Baasankhuu - who is contributing to improving digital marketing options for Mongolian Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs). In Mongolia, SMEs make up 98 per cent of all enterprises, and they face many obstacles to unlocking their full potential, including access finance and digital marketing systems.
Developing a new and better SME structure and marketing strategy is one way of helping SMEs fully utilise their potential and to better market their products both domestically and internationally. Currently Sarantuya, through her mentoring program, is using her Australia Awards experiences to directly mentor business owners of Mongolian public and private SMEs including Booklo – online bookstore, Ur Mine – kids cashmere, Huugiin Gutal – male handmade leather shoes, and Torhondoi – wooden barrels.
In Australia, she studied a Master of Business Administration (MBA) at Monash University through her Australia Awards Scholarship – a two-year study program involving experience-based modules, consulting projects, and overseas learning and industry engagement opportunities. In addition to building her management knowledge and skills through the degree, Sarantuya’s exposure to company management practices was enhanced during a 2018 visit to Germany with mentors at the Amazon Fulfillment Center.
Click here to read the fully story.
For information on the Australian Aid Program, including the Australian Awards Scholarship Program, please click the following links:
You can find the latest information on the Minister for Foreign Affairs, the Minister for Trade and the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade on following websites: