One of the key components of global trade is also one of the most vulnerable to cybersecurity threats – and if such an attack was successful, it would cause huge disruption with knock-on effects for people around the world.
According to the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), over 80% of the volume of international trade in goods is carried by sea and that percentage is even higher for developing countries.
The whole industry is reliant on a series of complex, ‘just in time’ supply chains. if just one element is disrupted, it can have massive repercussions.
One example: the disruption to supply chains around the globe in 2021 when Ever Given, one of the largest container ships in existence, was grounded in the Suez Canal, blocking one of the world’s busiest shipping channels and forcing many other ships to take much longer journeys around the Cape of Good Hope, severely delaying shipments of electronics, machinery, furniture, household goods, and more.
Ports and shipping are becoming increasingly connected to the internet and that’s making them a tempting target for hackers, especially when much of the sector is simultaneously reliant on legacy technology that can be decades old.
And the prospect of disruptive cyberattacks against shipping and ports isn’t just theoretical – they’re already happening.
In 2017, shipping giant Maersk had to deal with a backlog at ports when it was hit as part of the global NotPetya cyberattack. The company had to reinstall thousands of servers and tens of thousands of PCs to get back up and running again.
In 2021, a major cyberattack disrupted container operations at the South African port of Cape Town, restricting the movement of cargo until systems were restored. Both incidents, alongside the grounding of the Ever Given, demonstrate how disruption to shipping can have big consequences for the global supply chain, businesses and individuals.
Despite this, the maritime industry remains underprepared for cyberattacks.
“It’s a really big area measured in the trillions of dollars – but it’s also a bit sort of old guard in the sense of nothing happens, nothing changes very quickly,” says Kevin Jones, professor of computer science at the University of Plymouth and lead on the institution’s Maritime Cyber Threats Research Group.
“And there’s a mindset in the sector of ‘Once I leave port…nobody can touch me, I don’t need to worry about anything until I come back’. Those things were sort of true 30 or 40 years ago but they’re not true anymore.”
That sort of approach means that the industry has struggled to keep pace with cybersecurity threats, with legacy IT systems and a lack of visibility into networks making it a prime target for hackers – and that could have far-reaching consequences.
In a project alongside the Bank of England designed to test how insurance companies would react to such an incident, Plymouth’s Maritime Cyber Threats Research Group developed a scenario where attackers secretly gain control of ship controls and use this to crash them into ports and cranes, damaging ships and infrastructure, and losing cargo.
In this fictional scenario, the attackers also threaten to cause further accidents, unless the five biggest shipping companies pay a ransom of $50 million each. In order to prevent further attacks, much of the world’s shipping stops for days, crippling the global supply chain.
It’s an imagined event, but one based on worst-case scenarios of what attackers could achieve by targeting an industry that is struggling to keep up with cybersecurity – at a time when US Coast Guard Cyber Command has warned of a 68% rise of reported cyber incidents against the sector during the last year alone.
Part of the problem is the unusual nature of the operating environment: managing the technology on a vast container ship is a very different situation to sorting out the PCs in an office. When a vessel can be on the oceans for weeks or months at a time, it’s not as if a full IT refresh can be made at short notice – and a lack of connectivity can make it difficult to download security patches and software updates, even critical ones.
“The current state of the maritime industry from a cybersecurity point of view is pretty poor and that’s not solely down to owners and operators in the industry, it’s because of the complexity,” says Tom Scriven, principal consultant at cybersecurity company Mandiant, who previously spent eight years in the navy.
There are the issues of legacy systems, he notes, but also of new ships coming online that have increased connectivity that brings new problems, such as a lack of segmentation across internal networks, an increased threat surface from third parties and suppliers, and customers connecting in and out, he says.
All of these factors help to make maritime a prime target for hackers, with many different motives ranging from cyber espionage to general profiteering from cyber crime.
Scriven points to a hacking group Mandiant tracks as APT40, which is a cyber espionage operation linked to the Chinese state that targets the engineering, transportation, and defence industries, especially where the sectors overlap with maritime technologies. The group has conducted operations since at least 2013 in what researchers say are a means of supporting China’s efforts to modernise its navy by examining systems and stealing sensitive blueprints.
Mandiant has also detailed attacks against the Israeli shipping sector by cyber attackers. They are suspected to be the work of hackers operating out of Iran with the intention of conducting espionage and collecting intelligence in support of Iranian interests. The attacks include masquerading as legitimate cloud services to steal usernames and passwords, alongside attempts to trick victims into downloading malware.
Then there’s cyber criminals who are out for financial gain. These hackers want to make as much money as they can with as little effort as possible – and targeting the maritime industry could provide them with a big payday due to the combination of old, insecure networks and the fact that port infrastructure is vital to so many industries.
“If you were to find an operator or supplier similar in size in the European ecosystem – perhaps operated in Rotterdam, Antwerp or Felixstowe, and then you had the same success as an attacker – the ramifications of eight days of serious degraded container movement, the impact on an already stressed supply chain, would be horrific,” says Scriven.
But it’s not just ports that could be disrupted by cyberattacks against the maritime industry. There’s also the possibility that by targeting the right systems, cyber criminals could provide ships out in the open seas with bad information, tamper with their GPS tracking or provide false warnings that could move ships off course – either to cause disruption, or to direct them towards trouble, or even pirates who want to divert targets away from shipping lanes into less well-protected areas.
It might sound far-fetched, but this sort of disruption represents a very real threat, particularly in times of conflict.
“This has to be taken very, very seriously, because the implications of a major incident can be huge, especially in times of conflict,” says Captain Rahul Khanna, global head of marine consulting at Allianz and a veteran of 14 years at sea. “We’ve already seen that GPS spoofing has been done, it’s happening and we just hope there isn’t collateral damage in a conflict between countries. The industry overall needs to realise we need to learn from this.”
There are initiatives underway to help to improve cybersecurity across the sailing and shipping sectors, such as the International Maritime Organization’s maritime cyber-risk security program. It aims to provide guidelines that allow ship manufacturers, shipping companies and ports to identify, analyse and assess cyber risks and mitigate them to an acceptable level to support safe and secure shipping.
But for the most part, these are guidelines – and with ships, the systems that power them and even Internet of Things-connected devices inside modern vessels all being produced in different countries with differing levels of regulation, it isn’t anywhere near being joined up. That situation needs to change before things can improve.
“The industry overall needs to realize we must learn from this and it’s only a matter of time before somebody does come under attack, so what needs to be done is ensure the regulation requirements are implemented, especially in the critical parts of the industry that can have a lot more impact,” says Khanna.
Like any other industry, the basics can go a long way to helping improve security, such as applying security patches, using strong passwords and rolling out multi-factor authentication. The nature of shipping means it’s more challenging to find the time to provide this support around information security when rushing cargo around the globe, but taking care of security is more beneficial in the long run than leaving it aside.
It’s this sort of thing which the University of Plymouth’s Maritime Cyber Threats Research Group is discussing with vessel manufacturers as well as captains of ships as, ultimately, they’re the people responsible for the security of the infrastructure once they’re out on the high seas.
“Basic cyber awareness done in a context-specific way makes a huge difference, along with establishing proper protocols,” says Jones. “Some of it is knowing when to do things like patching and when to replace a lot of it is knowing what your risk exposure is.”
“Should you patch when en route? The answer is probably ‘yes’, if it’s a critical patch, if you know what you’re doing. But, should you patch when you’re sort of 20 minutes from New York? Probably not actually because, at that point, the risk sort of outweighs the reward,” he explains.
Jones and others hope that attempts to direct attention to cybersecurity issues in the maritime sector encourage action, improving the resilience of an industry that’s of great importance, particularly for global supply chains – and it’s better for everyone if attacks can be prevented before they happen rather than needing to be dealt with after they’ve occurred.
“Ultimately, if we don’t get this right, we all suffer,” says Jones.
Cydome, the award-winning provider of ship-wide cybersecurity, is announcing that it has been certified by the IACS Classification Society, RINA (Royal Institution of Naval Architects), for its advanced cybersecurity suite covering IT, OT, communication cybersecurity and networks onboard ships as well as its compliance management tool.
The evaluation conducted by RINA has assured that Cydome’s suite of tools, which offer cybersecurity for systems and networks onboard ships, complies with the marine regulatory framework of the Class Society and is suitable to be used in the marine environment.
Cydome’s solution offers advanced cybersecurity capabilities designed to fend off maritime cybercrime through the monitoring, detecting, and rectifying of cyber threats. To achieve this compliance certificate, the system was tasked with demonstrating its real-time capabilities by performing network security coverage, vulnerability assessment, compliance assessment, and assets management while also proving conformance with current IMO guidelines, Industry Standards, and RINA Rules of Marine security.
The solution also carries a number of other certifications, including ISO certifications for Cybersecurity (27001) and Cloud Security (27017), Certified Inmarsat Application, and QG+ quality management certification, as well as others. Cydome is also a Certification Body for the “Maritime Cyber Baseline,” a scheme supported by the Royal Institute of Naval Architects to enable a path to compliance with IMO Maritime Cyber Risk Management guidelines.
Nir Ayalon, Cydome’s CEO mentioned: “This certification is further validation of Cydome’s effort to continually offer the highest safety standards possible in order to protect ships and assist ship owners and operators in creating a safe operational environment for shipping.”
Singapore shipbuilder Sembcorp Marine has suffered a cyberattack that left information on employees and operations compromised, the firm announced Thursday.
The company said that it recently discovered a cybersecurity incident in which an unauthorized party accessed part of its IT network via third-party software products, gaining access to some information about personnel as well as non-critical information relating to its operations.
Sembcorp said it treated the incident seriously and took immediate actions, with cybersecurity experts appointed to seal up breaches, assist with an impact assessment, and strengthen IT security measures.
Based on the investigation and impact assessment, Sembmarine believes that the risks have been effectively addressed, with the company’s business operations remaining unaffected. The company has contacted affected personnel to help them manage any possible risks.
Sembmarine also notified the authorities and is working closely with them on the breach.
“The company is mindful of the concerns of all affected parties and would like to assure all our stakeholders that information security and the privacy of all stakeholders are our top priorities,” said the statement.
The breach is not expected to have any material impact on earnings for the fiscal year.
The cyberattack comes just days after Sembcorp revealed new optimism about its orderbook. The company posted a net loss of $104.4 million for the first half of 2022, improving from a $463 million net loss for the six months ended 30 June 2021. Revenues were up 30 percent year-on-year.
The Department of Defense has opened up millions of dollars in grant funding to a research consortium in Rhode Island that will fund cybersecurity and supply chain research for the maritime industry.
Earlier this month, the department designated six new Defense Manufacturing Communities across the country. The program, authorized through the 2019 National Defense Authorization Act, is designed to fund long-term investments in local businesses that work on national security technologies or innovation.
The money is awarded to joint ventures made up of academic institutions, defense contractors or associations, non-profits or state and local governments. One of the consortiums selected this year is led by the University of Rhode Island Research Foundation, which is proposing to use up to $5 million in federal grant funding “to address weaknesses in the maritime defense industrial base through strengthening workforce training or retraining or recruitment and retention, and expanding small business assistance to support automation and robotics and cyber resiliency.”
“The project will provide a minimum of 50 small business assistance grants, educate and train 675 students and workers using Manufacturing Innovation Institute enhanced offerings, and launch an innovative Education to Assessment model to enhance assessment capability and supplier matching for DoD supply chain companies,” reads a project description on DoD’s website.
In a phone call, a representative from the University of Rhode Island identified Erik Brine, director for defense research and development initiatives and operations at the university, as the lead for the project. Brine did not immediately return an emailed request for comment and further details on the project.
According to DoD, the department has doled out $50 million in funding for the program over the last two years to 11 defense manufacturing communities, 1,350 businesses and 29,000 workers. The funding has gone to develop 11 new defense technologies, make improvements for 23 more and provide cybersecurity assistance to nearly 400 companies.
In addition to the URI Research Foundation, the consortium partners include academic and research institutions like Polaris MEP, 401 Tech Bridge, Brown University and the Rhode Island Department of Education, defense contractors General Dynamics Electric Boat, Raytheon, and military institutions like the U.S. Naval Warfare College and the Naval Undersea Warfare Center, among others.
In a statement, Rep. Jim Langevin, D-R.I., co-founder of the congressional cybersecurity caucus, said the grants would benefit both national security and his home state economy.
“The University of Rhode Island Research Foundation’s designation as a Defense Manufacturing Community will attract millions of dollars in federal investments to advance our national security, develop our workforce, and drive Rhode Island’s economy forward,” said Langevin. “I can’t wait to see how this grant funding will help our defense manufacturing sector to expand its cutting-edge work on issues of robotics, cybersecurity and other emerging technologies.”
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He explained that over the past decade, cyber security has not kept pace with the rapid development of autonomous, connected iot based systems that are now becoming commonplace across the sectors. “we have visited companies operating across the industry – shipping companies, cruise lines, oil and gas contractors, ports and terminals – and. Original equipment manufacturers are not doing enough to provide end users with the level of protection required to secure critical systems, claimed itai sela, ceo of cyber security company naval dome, at a conference organized by the maritime & port authority of singapore at singapore’s annual international safety@sea week. speaking to delegates, sela said that. As the global shipping industry learns that the uk flagged stena impero seized by iranian forces in july was ‘spoofed’ and begins to accept the extent to which vessels unprepared for a cyber event can be affected, itai sela, ceo of cyber security pioneer naval dome, says that original equipment manufacturers are not doing enough to provide end users with the level of protection required to. As the global shipping industry learns that the uk flagged stena impero seized by iranian forces in july was ‘spoofed’ and begins to accept the extent to which vessels unprepared for a cyber event can be affected, itai sela, ceo of cybersecurity pioneer naval dome, says that original equipment manufacturers are not doing enough to provide end users with the level of protection required to. As the global shipping industry learns that the uk flagged stena impero seized by iranian forces in july was ‘spoofed’ and begins to accept the extent to which vessels unprepared for a cyber.
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Operators are not entirely powerless. there are actions they can take to regain some control of securing the supply chain of onboard systems. of those maritime organisations that reported being the subject of a cyber attack in the last three years, 3% said the attack resulted in them paying a ransom. Menu. calendar; blog feed; video; home; amer; apac; emea. Having such an understanding can help support decision making around key issues such as cyber security audits of suppliers (e.g. focusing audit efforts on high risk individual contracts, or on suppliers delivering multiple contracts with moderate to high cyber security risks).
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A new U.S. Coast Guard Cyber Command report on cybersecurity trends in the maritime environment said the significance of cyber hygiene, detection, and response “grew exponentially” last year due to a 68 percent increase in reported maritime cyber incidents and USCG efforts to ensure maritime facilities are complying with cyber regulations.
A cyber attack on the port environment can compromise physical facility access control systems, manipulate terminal and gate operating systems for the purpose of leaking sensitive supply chain data or facilitating smuggling or cargo theft, stop port operations by compromising the terminal headquarters, compromise operational technology systems such as cranes in a way that leads to loss of life or property, tamper with PNT so that vessels cannot safely navigate a port, and compromise shipboard systems with impacts to safety or cargo.
U.S. Coast Guard Cyber Command’s (CGCYBER) first Cyber Protection Team — deployable special forces that assess threats and vulnerabilities, identify the presence of adversaries on networks and systems, and respond to cyber incidents — attained full operational capability in May 2021, with the second team following in November 2021. CGCYBER’s Maritime Cyber Readiness Branch, tasked with translating “cybersecurity details into measurable operational risk,” investigated 47 cybersecurity incidents in 2021 “including several large-scale incidents affecting multiple organizations at once.”
“Though the number of reported incidents has increased 68% from 2020 (28 total incidents), MCRB believes many other incidents go undetected or unreported,” the report notes.
The maritime environment incidents reported to the Coast Guard in 2021 included phishing at sectors Guam, Columbia River, Los Angeles/Long Beach, Corpus Christi, Houston/Galveston, Mobile, Charleston, Maryland/NCR, New York, and New England, as well as MSU Port Arthur. Ransomware was reported at sectors Columbia River, Los Angeles/Long Beach, New Orleans, Virginia, Delaware Bay, Maryland/NCR, Long Island Sound, and New England. Sector Puget Sound reported an incident related to authorized access, while Columbia River reported a suspected snitch device. Sector Delaware Bay reported an AIS spoof.
“Cyber-criminals are now using more advanced tactics, techniques, and procedures (TTPs) including focused ransomware attacks in multi-extortion style campaigns with hopes of ensuring a higher, more guaranteed payout,” the report said. “Rather than hitting a broad range of targets, cyber criminals have evolved to focus ransomware attacks on higher value targets.”
The three most popular ransomware-as-a-service variants targeting the maritime transportation system in 2021 were Maze, Sodinokibi, and Ryuk.
“Nation state malicious cyber actors (MCAs) typically abuse zero-day vulnerabilities and known exploitations,” the report continued. “Zero-day vulnerabilities are vulnerabilities disclosed or discovered without an available patch or update to remediate the vulnerability. MCAs often use zero-day vulnerabilities in their initial attack vector to avoid detection. Nation state MCAs abuse Virtual Private Servers (VPS) and web shells to avoid detection and circumvent host system security in order to gain access to the victim networks. MCAs use these techniques within the MTS to increase the probability of successfully exploiting an intended victim.”
Phishing, of which industries within the maritime environment such as logistics and shipping saw “slight increases” last year, “remained the most prevalent means by which MCAs delivered malicious code” in 2021, and both nation-state actors and cyber criminals “will very likely continue to use phishing emails to gain initial access to victim networks.”
As of last October, Maritime Transportation Security Act-regulated facilities are under requirements to address cyber vulnerabilities. “This policy brought with it new cyber competency expectations for industry facility security officers and Coast Guard facility inspectors,” the report noted. “Coast Guard facility inspectors will review cybersecurity plans submitted by facilities. They will also incorporate cybersecurity reviews when conducting security inspections.”
Maritime transportation system partners “fully remediated two-thirds of all exploitable findings on publicly facing systems and 45% of all internally exploitable findings within six months of a CPT Assess mission,” USCG said. “They also partially remediated an additional one-sixth of publicly facing and 43% of internally accessible findings within this 6-month window.”
Out of publicly exploitable findings, 14 had been fully mitigated as of the six-month follow-up, two had accepted the risk of the finding, three were false positives, and three had taken no action to date. Out of internally exploitable findings, 53 had been fully mitigated at the six-month check-in time, 46 had been partially mitigated, five accepted the risk of the findings, and eight had taken no action to date.
Common findings included credentials that were easy to guess — including passwords of “admin,” “PASSWORD,” or “1234” — or easy to crack, such as “123456,” “password1,” “abc123,” or “iloveyou.” Other issues included weak password policies, use of open mail relay servers, poor patch management, outdated operating systems or applications that did not support updates, elevated service account privileges, and non-essential use of elevated access.
CGCYBER mitigation recommendations to vulnerable entities included changes in password policies, privileged account management, network segmentation, multifactor authentication, vulnerability scanning, software updates, user training, and disabling or removing a feature or program.
The report noted the most user resistance — even though it carried the lowest cost of the mitigations — was seen with the recommendation to change password policies to require more length and complexity.
“Despite widespread frustration with the use of passwords from both a usability and security standpoint, they remain a very widely used form of authentication,” the report stated. “Humans, however, have only a limited ability to memorize complex, arbitrary secrets, so they often choose easily guessed passwords.”
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The overall goal of these guidelines is the building of a strong operational resilience to cyber attacks. to achieve this goal, maritime companies should follow these best practices: identify the threat environment to understand external and internal cyber threats to the ship. identify vulnerabilities by developing complete and full inventories. The biggest challenges and best practices to mitigate risks in maritime cybersecurity. ships are increasingly using systems that rely on digitalization, integration, and automation, which call for cyber risk management on board. as technology continues to develop, the convergence of information technology (it) and operational technology (ot. In this article, you will learn about maritime cybersecurity and why risk management is crucial, some of the biggest security challenges shipowners face, common risks affecting the industry, and best practices from the imo to mitigate the risk that you should keep in mind. let’s get started!. International maritime organization (imo) resolution msc.428(98), maritime cyber risk management in safety management systems, and msc fal.1 circ.3, guidelines on maritime cyber risk management. Managing cyber risk is, therefore, of intrinsic value to protect both safety and profitability. cyber risk management is also a new requirement in safety management systems under the imo ism code, to take effect upon a vessel’s first renewal of a document of compliance on or after january 1, 2021. arc advisory group clients can view the.
The document, named “port cybersecurity – good practices for cybersecurity in the maritime sector”, has been developed in collaboration with several eu ports. the study lists the main threats posing risks to the ecosystem and describes key cyber attack scenarios that could impact them. Insurance companies dealing with cyber and maritime insurance should be encouraged to partner with research institutions like think tanks and the national labs to conduct long term studies in this area to better address these emerging issues of potential financial risk. 11. plan and simulate for future cyber challenges. It is one of the major challenges and threats to the maritime security. arms, drugs and even human beings are trafficked across countries via the means of seas. smugglers use the sea to smuggle contraband into various countries. despite steps taken by the government of various nations, trafficking through high seas is continuously on the rise.
Challenges And Best Practices To Mitigate Risks In Maritime Cyber
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abb’s vision is that the maritime industry of the future is electric, digital and connected as this combination enables safe, efficient bimco, along with control risks, nettitude lloyd’s reigster and hfw covers a wide range of topics when it comes to threats and if a network, identity, device or data is valuable – particularly if it is information tied to intellectual property, financials, sensitive files in this final video in the series on maritime cybersecurity, we review the maritime transportation system (mts) as a systems of join the course at rina.org.uk cybertraining rina and infosec partners have developed a comprehensive cyber security is an increasingly important topic for the maritime and offshore industries due to rapid digital transformation and watch christian pedersen and indrani chandrasegaran share compelling statistics to help you build the right amount of trust in cyber attacks and cyber spying are threatening the increasingly digitalized maritime industry. dnv gl and gard present a 20 the second webinar in the irclass inmex smm webinar series was held on 16th july, 2020 on the topic on “cyber resilience text us on whatsapp: api.whatsapp send?phone=14702091652&text=hello learn more about infor eam, top 10 cyber security problems facing the maritime industry mark oakton security director of infosec partners and chris boyd the threats posed by maritime cyber security incidents are increasing, and the shipping industry is taking action to mitigate.
The Ukrainian State Service of Special Communication and Information Protection, along with the Ministry of Digital Transformation, has announced they have signed a cybersecurity memorandum of understanding with the Council of Ministers of the Republic of Poland. In the midst of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Poland has come to Ukraine’s aid to defend against Russian cyberaggression, and the agreement solidifies this partnership, as well as a commitment to sharing cyberintelligence. Mykhailo Fedorov, Vice Prime Minister and Minister of Digital Transformation of Ukraine, stated, “The first world cyberwar is ongoing. Therefore, joining efforts and exchanging practices is a logical step in this area. With Poland, we have not only a common physical border, but also a joint problem in cyberspace, where we experience the same kind of attacks. I am sure that together we will become stronger and more effective.”
The new African Centre for Coordination and Research in Cybersecurity has been established in Lomé, the capital city of Togo, with the goal of unifying the cybersecurity efforts of individual African governments. Quartz notes that cybercrime on the continent is growing exponentially, signaled by a 438% increase in phishing scams in Kenya last quarter and a total of 81 million cyber attacks in three months in Nigeria, South Africa, and Kenya combined. Created as a partnership between the Togolese government and United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (Uneca), the Centre will allow the countries’ lawmakers, police, and security agencies to share cyber intelligence and monitor malicious cyberactivity. With its National Cybersecurity Agency and a Personal Data Protection Authority, and as one of the few countries to ratify the African Union Convention on Cybersecurity and Personal Data Protection of 2014, Togo has demonstrated it’s ahead of the curve when it comes to securing African cyberspace. Cina Lawson, Togo’s digital economy and transformation minister, explained, “We aim to become a significant digital hub in Africa. Our partnership model with the private sector is an innovative approach that we want to showcase to inspire other countries for safer cyberspace on the continent.”
The US Area Maritime Security Committee (AMSC) released a report detailing the challenges posed by the ever-changing threat landscape, and Safety4Sea provides an overview of their findings. The COVID-19 pandemic increased reliance on virtual meeting spaces and platforms, exposing the intel shared via these methods to new potential security threats. Other challenges include the high demand for experienced cybersecurity professionals, insufficient incident reporting requirements (and enforcement capability), a flood of cybersecurity alerts and warnings from multiple agencies, and the unique threat posed by Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UASs). AMSC recommended the CG Cyber Command and the Office of Port and Facility Compliance implement a unified communication standard for the distribution of cyber alerts. Other suggestions include establishing cybersecurity training for AMSC members, clarifying the role of the Coast Guard in cyberincident response, and developing mitigation strategies for emerging tech like 5G. A revamp of the Coast Guard’s internet portal Homeport 2.0, as well as improved training and a comprehensive user guide, were suggested to make the portal easier to navigate. And regarding UASs, AMSCs recommended the Coast Guard and Department of Homeland Security support the development of legislation to provide law enforcement the tools necessary to prosecute cases where maritime infrastructure and assets are at risk.
Switzerland-based commodity and energy trader Mercuria has invested US$1.5 million into Australian start-up rise-x, a provider of blockchain-based marine fuel management systems.
Mercuria subsidiary Minerva Bunkering has previously used rise-x’s DIANA platform to digitally track refuelling of ships at global ports, with the two firms announcing a partnership last summer to establish a spin off business that combines Minerva’s Advanced Delivery Platform (ADP) with DIANA to create an end-to-end bunker management service.
“We have been working with rise-x for some time now and have been impressed with the team and the technology,” said Mercuria’s Chief Operations Officer Alistair Cross.
“The software system has proven its potential to improve productivity and to increase transparency and traceability across the global commodities ecosystem.”
rise-x recently exceeded its initial US$2.5 million funding target by securing US$2.77 million in total private investment, including Mercuria’s support. The company was also named as a recipient of AU$895,000 under the Australian government’s Accelerating Commercialization Grant Programme.
“We can use blockchain and the interconnectivity of the world to bring customers, suppliers, financers, accountants and others onto a common platform that can be accessed from anywhere,” said Rise-x co-founder and Chief Executive Officer Rowan Fenn.
“All parties can access a common truth to observe and manage transactions such as commodity exchanges, goods movements and service deliveries with immutable records created in real time. Every step along the way has been recorded securely in a common, transparent place.”
“We can create smart contracts that will record carbon emissions from everyday activities so companies can offset those emissions in an open and transparent way. But more importantly, we can use the same technology for carbon offset companies to prove that they are credible and delivering what they have promised.”