The Australian Federal Police will spend $40 million to fortify its buildings in the country's capital cities, amid increasing fears of improvised explosive devices and car and truck attacks.
Citing the fatal shooting of NSW Police accountant Curtis Cheng at Parramatta in October 2015 and three other attacks against police facilities in the Gold Coast, Sydney and Adelaide this year, the AFP has told Federal Parliament the works are critical for protecting officers and staff.
Upgrades to AFP facilities in Sydney, Melbourne, Canberra, Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth will form part of Operation Rampart, which will begin in February and is expected to be completed by the end of next year.
An assessment of security vulnerabilities at AFP facilities across the country found improved fortifications were needed to reduce the threat from homemade bombs and unauthorised access by intruders and vehicles.
New systems to respond to security incidents and stand-alone servers for security related IT systems will also be installed.
Sydney's AFP headquarters will get new fixed bollards, costing $300,000, to reduce the risk of an attack like the incident at the Merrylands police station in July in which a man attempted to set off an explosive before driving his car into the basement garage door and setting himself on fire.
The priority list is based on urgent risks but AFP officials told Parliament some vulnerabilities couldn't be explained for security reasons.
Facilities in Sydney, Melbourne and Perth will receive new two-layer security checkpoints and hostile-vehicle management systems, while new resistance systems and tools to isolate intruders and lock down buildings will be added.
Barton Police College and Majura Training Centre in Canberra will have new security boundaries created, along with upgraded security checkpoints and visitor entry controls.
Among early works are new servers and computers for AFP security systems, costing $1.1 million. Some existing services have been stretched to capacity in recent years, causing periodic failures.
The work will require approval and involvement of the federal government, Canberra's National Capital Authority, local councils and building owners for each site. Changes to the AFP's national headquarters near Parliament House have been agreed to by the family of architect Harry Seidler.
Deakin University counterterrorism expert Greg Barton said targeting of police stations in terror attacks had coincided with the rise of the Islamic State group.
He said low-cost security features such as street bollards and setbacks for car access helped improve security.
"In the past couple of years we've seen ISIS pushing for those lone-wolf attacks but in ways that up the lethality," he said. "The most dramatic example is probably the Nice truck attack.
"The shooting of Numan Haider at the Endeavour Hills police station brought home to police what sort of risk they were dealing with."
Professor Barton said the Lindt cafe siege had shown Australian authorities the risk of terror in ordinary public spaces.
"While there is nothing absolutely new, it tips the balance of what authorities should do and how they should direct resources," he said.