2022 Distinguished Alumnus
PhD in Applied Artificial Intelligence
After moving to Australia in 2005, Dr Omaru Maruatona completed a PhD in Applied Artificial Intelligence (AI) in 2013 at the Internet Commerce Security Laboratory, an industry research laboratory partnership between Federation University, the Victorian State Government, the Australian Federal Police (AFP) and Westpac. Omaru’s PhD involved researching, prototyping and recommending an AI framework to boost Westpac’s internet banking fraud detection capabilities.
Omaru has gone on to have an impressive career in the industry, working for global company, Computershare, before joining PwC as a cybersecurity architect.
Following the demerger of a large Australian mining organisation, he was engaged to manage the new company’s cyber security capability across three continents, and was also employed by La Trobe University as a Cyber Security Industry Professor, one of the first industry professors hired to help develop their courses.
In 2017 Omaru founded Cyber-AI company, Aiculus , which uses specialised AI algorithms to detect sophisticated threats between digital systems. As Founder and CEO, Omaru has led the company’s investment and expansion into Singapore, as well as a collaboration with the Monetary Authority of Singapore. In 2020, Omaru secured Aiculus’ first capital raise of around AUD1million.
Throughout his career Omaru has advocated for diversity in the cybersecurity and technology domains. He is a mentor at CyRise, the only Australian cybersecurity business accelerator, where he champions the inclusion of women entrepreneurs and other minorities, and is also an advisor at CyLon Go, an initiative that offers Cybersecurity scholarships to minorities.
As an expert in the industry, Omaru regularly speaks at academic and industry conferences. Recently he was invited by the Australian Cybersecurity Growth Network to launch the 2021 Australian Cybersecurity Sector Competitiveness Plan.
Omaru’s continual professional growth while consistently giving back to his local community and country is to be commended.