As vessels at sea become better linked via broadband satellite and other connections, the risk of ship cyber security issues increases. To increase awareness of these risks, the global shipping community released guidelines for avoiding potential cyber vulnerabilities that could potentially drive major safety, environmental and commercial incidents.

The guidelines were released by BIMCO, the largest international shipping association, and other trade groups related to cruise lines, cargo ships and tankers. Similar to Framework for Improving Critical Infrastructure Cybersecurity published by NIST, the document is intended to provide ship owners with information on “how to assess their operations and put in place the necessary procedures and actions to maintain the security systems onboard their ships.” The guidelines provide a risk-based approach to identifying and responding to cyber threats and complement the existing risk management requirements of the International Safety Management Code and the International Ship and Port Facility Security Code.

Like in any office, cyber security impacts all levels of a company, from senior management ashore to crew on board. The measures included in the report to lower cyber security risks include:

  • How to raise awareness of the safety, security and commercial risks for shipping companies if no cyber security measures are in place
  • How to protect shipboard OT and IT infrastructure and connected equipment
  • How to manage users, ensuring appropriate access to necessary information
  • How to protect data used onboard ships, according to its level of sensitivity
  • How to authorize administrator privileges for users, including during maintenance and support on board or via remote link
  • How to protect data being communicated between the ship and the shore side

How Uplogix contributes to ship cyber security

Uplogix is often chosen as the technology to manage maritime network and satellite communications infrastructure. With deployments ranging from cruise ships and work boats to oil drilling and production platforms, our array of specialized drivers for satellite modems and antenna controllers makes Uplogix a satcom standard for ensuring network uptime and lowering support costs.

Uplogix benefits for maritime satellite include:

  • 24×7, in-depth local monitoring of both satellite communications equipment like antennas and modems, and IP networking gear like routers and switches
  • Automated management and recovery of routine network issues plus challenges unique to maritime satellite networks like blockage zone remediation
  • Out-of-band functionality means that technicians can access remote gear any time, any place for troubleshooting

For more information, check out the Satellite page at Uplogix.com.