LR, QinetiQ and GasLog join forces on maritime cyber security

Lloyd’s Register (LR) and QinetiQ said they have launched a pilot project with Monaco-based LNG shipper GasLog to increase the level of security of cyber-enabled ships.

Cyber-attacks have become more frequent and more sophisticated, with the threat becoming a board level preoccupation for the marine sector, the companies said in a joint statement on Friday.

“Cyber security is becoming an increasingly important element of the risk profile of critical assets that are connected between ship and shore. The Baltic and International Maritime Council (BIMCO), the International Maritime Organization (IMO) and the United States Coast Guard (USCG) are all developing guidance and regulation to address these challenges.”

The collaboration between LR and QinetiQand aims at developing robust methodologies for readiness against existing and emerging standards, vulnerability and impact assessment and mitigation measures, all carefully tailored for the maritime sector and the specific needs of customers, the statement said.

LR and QinetiQ’s first pilot project is with GasLog looking at specific methodologies for LNG vessels in order to establish GasLog’s readiness with respect to IMO/USCG guidelines and available standards.

GasLog’s Head of Newbuilding, Innovation and Projects, Theo Katemidis said: “At GasLog, we are constantly focused on driving safety and environmental improvements through our business as the wider LNG shipping industry continues to evolve. Our collaboration with LR and QinetiQ demonstrates our desire to take a lead in cyber security to further understand future vulnerabilities and ensure that we have the necessary mitigating measures in place.

LR’s Marine & Offshore Director Nick Brown said: “Due to the rapid pace of technology development prescriptive approaches to risk management are not always suitable. Instead, a ‘total systems’ approach is required taking into account all systems on board and – critically – on shore, how they are designed and installed, how they connect, and how they will be managed.”

QinetiQ’s International Maritime Consultancy and Software Director, Vittorio Vagliani, said: “A number of factors are putting pressure on the maritime industry to increase its focus on cyber security. It is likely that cyber certification will soon become a legal requirement for entering some territorial waters. Increased internet connectivity at sea enlarges the window of opportunity for criminal organisations to intercept confidential data such as the ship’s position, its cargo, or its passenger list. In a future where autonomous and remotely controlled craft are commonplace, greater cyber protection will be crucial in ensuring chartered vessels cannot be taken off course by those with malicious intent.

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