Alek Sigley, 29, who has been studying at Kim Il Sung University in Pyongyang, was named in South Korean media overnight as having been taken into custody by North Korean officials.
"Owing to our privacy obligations we will not provide further comment", a DFAT spokesperson added.
Australia has no diplomatic mission of its own in Pyongyang and is represented there by the Swedish embassy.
An Australian student has been detained in North Korea, according to media reports.
"Nobody has really established a reputation for being able to virtually live tweet out of North Korea what he's having for dinner and breakfast and what people are wearing - that is something new", Executive Director of La Trobe Asia Euan Graham told Business Insider Australia.
Like many other Western nations, Australia does not have an embassy in North Korea.
"I will just be measured in what I say because that's all about using the best opportunities we have right now to inform ourselves about where Alek is and what his safety is and where he's being held and what conditions".
Sigley had been visiting the country on-and-off as a tourist and tour operator for many years, even last year choosing to host his wedding in Pyongyang.
Sigley's family said he is a postgraduate student at Kim Il Sung University and had traveled to North Korea several times since 2012.
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The United States imposed a ban on its citizens travelling to North Korea in September 2017, with a few exceptions for humanitarian workers or journalists.
"It's very concerning, I'm very concerned", he said.
"As a long-term foreign resident on a student visa, I have almost unprecedented access to Pyongyang", he wrote at the time.
"He told me of the grueling training needed to get his goose-stepping up to standard, but also of the bonds he forged with his fellow marchers and the sense of pride and achievement he felt afterwards".
North Korea has been known to detain foreigners - including the shocking case of Otto Warmbier, a college student who was released in a vegetative state back to the US.
Warmbier was detained in 2016 and sentenced to 15 years of forced labor for trying to steal a propaganda poster in his hotel.
Petrov said Sigley may have been detained on his way home.
Reuters reported a source familiar with the situation saying Sigley had been reported missing by friends.
Dr Petrov believes North Korea may have shut down his friend's communication channels before Donald Trump's expected visit on Sunday to the demilitarised zone that separates North and South Korea.