University of Wollongong Associate Professor Ann Rogerson supports any legislation that penalises contract cheating providers.
But the chair of the Academic Integrity Advisory Group at UOW wants to ensure those students who are seeking genuine support aren't punished.
While cheating is not unusual, researchers claim cheating services have expanded at an "alarming rate" across university campuses, prompting the federal government to draft tough new laws to crack down on academic fraudsters.
People found guilty under the proposed law could face up to two years in prison or a fine of up to $210,000.
The new law will be introduced as an amendment to the Tertiary Education Quality and Standards Agency Act, and the bill was set to go before Parliament this year.
The law would not target students who are caught using the services of a cheating business, as it is only directed at those who provide the cheating service.
Students who are caught cheating would continue to be dealt with by their educators' internal cheating policies and sanctions.
Prof Rogerson said the university supported moves to penalise and punish those doing the wrong thing.
She said said while there was no evidence to suggest a spike in contract cheating, there was no hiding the fact that students were finding new ways to deceive institutions.
Contract cheating occurs when a student gets somebody else to do the work for them and then submits it to an institution as if it's their own.
We would not want someone's mum who proofreads an essay and suggests an addition to be inadvertently captured by these laws.Universities Australia chief executive Catriona Jackson
It doesn't necessarily involve payment of money.
"It has been around for a long time. It is not new," Prof Rogerson said.
"Australia has been taking a very active approach into educating students, educating staff and having effective policies and government structures within our institutions.
"We discuss the issue openly with people. We highlight the implications of cheating and contract cheating and plagairising and everything as part of the educative process.
"And where people breach the rules and policies of the university, then we take appropriate action."
Prof Rogerson was interested to see how the final legislation looked, adding targeting contract cheating providers was a step in the right direction.
This view was supported by Universities Australia chief executive Catriona Jackson.
Ms Jackson said draft legislation on contract cheating sends a "powerful signal" to deter commercial operators from trying to sell such services.
"Australia's universities utterly condemn contract cheating. We absolutely support the intention of the Government and Education Minister Dan Tehan to tackle commercial cheating services," she said.
"The overall direction is a step forward and supports universities' efforts to take a tough stance on cheating."
But Ms Jackson added it was important to ensure the legislation that goes to Parliament later this year reflects the the Government's intention and wider community expectations.
"We would not want someone's mum who proofreads an essay and suggests an addition to be inadvertently captured by these laws," she said.
"We want to ensure that the harshest penalties are applied to the worst offenders."