The ANU Cybercrime Observatory’s mission is to monitor and identify trends from data collected from the Internet, or through government and industry partners.

Examples of our work include that analysis of botnet traffic and spam, investigations of underground online hacking forums, illicit markets, capture of malware, and the evolution of social engineering. The Observatory’s goal is to identify the patterns, methods and causes of Internet-based crime and to better understand the impact on victims and society.

Our research is focused on the disciplines of criminology and crime prevention. In line with the strategic research priorities of Australia, our team endeavours to assist in improving cybersecurity for Australians including individuals, businesses and government. We draw on law, regulatory theory, security studies, data mining, information security and computer science.

The ANU Cybercrime Observatory operates as an independent non-profit research group, leveraging data sharing partnerships with government, business and other cybercrime research groups. We undertake commissioned research and related services on a cost recovery fees basis and welcome collaboration. We have also offered research training, work experience and cross-disciplinary ‘incubation’ for undergraduate and postgraduate students in cybersecurity and cybercrime prevention.

Hero image by Markus Spiske on Unsplash


The Observatory was developed with the assistance of a 2010 Australian Research Council (ARC) Discovery Project grant in 2010 led by Professor Rod Broadhurst and Dr Ray Choo (formerly of the Australian Institute of Criminology and now at University of Texas at San Antonio). In 2012, the laboratory was renamed the ANU Cybercrime Observatory. Professor Roderic Broadhurst and Professor Peter Grabosky established the Observatory with the help of Dr Lennon Chang, Dr Steve Chon, Dr Mamoun Alazab, and Dr Nyguen Tran with the aim to help researchers, students and industry connect on cybercrime and security issues.

The Observatory currently receives research funding from the Australian Criminology Research Council (for work on spam and spear phishing). Prof Broadhurst also holds a research fellowship with the Korean Institute of Criminology. ANU IT security supports the Observatory and ACMA & CERTAus provide data as required.