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Cyber security a ‘weak spot’ in maritime, says DNV GL CEO

Tor Svensen, DNV GL Tor Svensen, DNV GL

Tor Svensen, CEO of DNV GL, has warned that the growing availability of communications and interconnected networks in the maritime industry is creating vulnerabilities that could be exploited by cyber attackers.

{mprestriction ids="1,2"}Speaking at this year’s CMA (Connecticut Maritime Association) event in Stamford, Connecticut, Mr Svensen said that, while critical network segments onboard vessels were generally kept isolated in the past, this has changed significantly in recent years.

“Ships and offshore structures are becoming more and more interconnected,” he said.

“In theory, all programmable components may be exposed to cyber threats, be it machinery, navigation or communication systems.”

“This is a weak spot. There are many ways something can go wrong with the systems or software – be it caused by technical or human error, or cyber criminals.”

The industry has seen its first cyber events, with issues surrounding the manipulation of AIS, ECDIS and GPS data already widely spoken about. Mr Svensen also notes that, in 2014, more than 50 cyber security incidents were detected in the Norwegian energy and oil and gas sector.

He recommends that owners and operators should consider cybersecurity self-assessments, third-party assessments, audits, testing and verification, and suggested that such requirements could also be implemented in future regulations.{/mprestriction}

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