IMO headquarters

IMO’s website restored after cyber attack

The website of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) is up and running, the UN body confirmed on its Twitter account on Friday.

IMO Headquarters; Image courtesy: IMO

The IMO used the social media account as one of the primary sources of communication with the public after its website went down on September 30, following a ‘sophisticated cyber-attack’.

The attack impacted a number of other web-based services of the organization.

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“The email system, including other Internal and external collaboration platforms, are working as normal. The platform used for virtual meeting with simultaneous interpretation has been unaffected and continued to function, without issue,” the IMO said in an update on October 2.

The organization explained the cyber-attack breached robust security measures in place. Namely, the IMO secured ISO/IEC 27001:2013 certification for its information security management system back in 2015.

The IMO Headquarters file servers are located in the UK, with extensive backup systems in Geneva.

Following the attack, the secretariat shut down key systems to prevent further damage from the attack.

Since October 1, service has been restored to the GISIS database; IMODOCS; and Virtual Publications. These systems are said to be back up and running.

“The Secretariat is working with UN International Computing Centre and security experts to restore systems as soon as possible, to identify the source of the attack, and further enhance security systems to prevent recurrence,” the IMO pointed out.

Earlier this week, French container shipping giant CMA CGM also confirmed a cyber attack impacting the company’s peripheral servers.

CMA CGM became the fourth major container shipping company to experience a cyber attack over the past five years, after Swiss Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC), China’s COSCO Shipping and Danish Maersk.

By September 30, all communications to and from CMA CGM were secured.

It is not clear whether these two attacked might be linked.