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Developments in connectivity and the transfer of data in greater volumes between sea and shore continue to bring significant gains for fleet management efficiency and crew welfare, but they also increase the vulnerability of critical systems onboard vessels to cyber attacks. An enduring feature of cyber threats is their ability to adapt and evolve, with new methods of attack finding.

IMO guidelines on maritime cyber risk management have helped stakeholders address cyber threats, but the nature of digital attacks continues to evolve. In recent times cyberattacks targeting the maritime sector increased by 168% in the Asia-Pacific region alone.

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Watch our on-demand webinar on “Leveraging technology to increase cyber resilience at sea” where we discussed methods and means with industry experts to identify, protect, detect and respond to cyber threats.

Beyond Compliance – Cyber Risk Management After IMO 2021

By adopting new provisions into the ISM Code that, for the first time, embedded cyber risk management into safety management systems (SMS) for merchant ships, the IMO provided a clear (albeit high-level) anchor point for ship operators to benchmark their vulnerability to cyber threats.

But the nature of digital attacks continues to evolve due to advances in computing technology and developing geopolitical conflicts. To ensure the resilience of their digital infrastructure, shipping companies need to look beyond regulatory compliance and be more proactive in their approach to cyber-risk management.

In our report Beyond Compliance, we examine the impact of the IMO 2021 cyber risk management code, explore the evolution of maritime cyber threats, and explain how shipowners can prevent or respond to these risks.

"It is important from our perspective to go above and beyond the regulations. We physically separate the business network, crew network, and operational technology networks from each other and we also go beyond that with our unified threat management approach."

Poul Rævdal, IT Business Manager, Evergas

One cornerstone of this approach is Unified Threat Management (UTM). By combining solutions such as firewalls, antivirus programs, content filters, and intrusion and detection systems into a single hardware and software package, Inmarsat’s Fleet Secure UTM streamlines the installation, configuration, administration, and maintenance of network security infrastructure. It thereby helps shipping companies.

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