Centrelink to offer free Internet access

Welfare agency to roll out 802.11n WLANs across its 389 offices

Free WiFi may help alleviate the long Centrelink queues.

Free WiFi may help alleviate the long Centrelink queues.

Centrelink visitors around Australia will soon be able to use their mobile phones and laptops to access Government websites across wireless local area networks (WLANs) while they wait to be served.

Government documents show the welfare agency will roll out an 802.11n WLAN at 389 of its offices within six months of awarding the tender to help with chronic long queues and enable more flexible service offerings.

“The general public will be able to access services offered using their own end point device such as a notebook, tablet or PDA that has the ability to connect to the Centrelink network using the approved 802.11 public wireless infrastructure and Captured Portal,” the documents read.

“Optionally they will be able to use the services offered by a Centrelink provided device (fixed desktop or Kiosk operating wirelessly).”

Access to the internet will be controlled, with users limited to government services and some personal websites such as banking and email.

Notably, the agency is demanding the WLAN support of IPv6 — the next generation Internet protocol — but will operate the network on IPv4.

Centrelink’s existing WLAN infrastructure is based on Cisco and Aruba kit.

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