The government has announced an expert computer security team to protect businesses and people from cyber attacks.
The new team is the key part of a new national action plan for cyber security launched by Communications Minister Amy Adams in Auckland this afternoon.
The plan includes a computer emergency response team (CERT) to handle computer security threats and provide information to help businesses and individuals protect themselves online.
Ms Adams said last year online attacks cost the country more than $250 million.
A Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB) report released yesterday said cyber attacks were on the rise. It said New Zealand's critical infrastructure was vulnerable due to its heavy reliance on ICT and its highly interconnected and interdependent nature.
"Cyber threats could have major economic ramifications or result in environmental damage or loss of life," the GCSB report said.