Marine transport is a mode of choice for many people who would like to ship oversize project machinery. However, this mode of transport may be susceptible to cyber-attacks if sufficient countermeasures were not taken to safeguard the vessel's IT systems. This article discusses some of the problems that can result in case your shipment is carried on a vessel without protection against cyber-attacks.
Delayed Delivery of Products
Hackers can take control of the navigation systems of a marine vessel that is transporting your goods. The crew may then be unable to steer the vessel to its destination. This cyber-attack can cause the vessel to delay on its journey as the crew tries to regain control of the navigation systems that have been hijacked. Product delivery can also be delayed in case the hackers make it impossible for the shipping company to track different pieces of cargo that are being transported on the vessel. Sorting the items becomes difficult, and recipients will delay receiving their products, as shippers resort to using a manual tracking system. You may, therefore, end up incurring extra costs, such as the cost of paying the technicians who had arrived to install that equipment.
Loss of the Products
It is also possible for hackers to work alongside pirates. The hackers can get control of the marine vessel and steer it off its course to a location where pirates are waiting to board that vessel. Those pirates can then offload everything aboard the vessel, including your equipment. Such a product loss can put your plans in jeopardy as you work with the shipping company to compensate you in case they had sufficient insurance to cover the cost of those products that you lost.
A more insidious risk from a cyber-attack involves hackers altering the control systems of your sophisticated equipment through the IT systems of the marine vessel. Such an act of sabotage may go unnoticed by the crew of the vessel. You will only realise that the equipment's control systems were tampered with once you start getting unexpected results after the products have been delivered and installed at your facility.
As you can see, cyber-attacks against a marine transport vessel can have serious consequences for you if you don't select a transporter carefully. It is therefore wise to ask the different shipping firms about what measures they have in place to prevent cyber-attacks. Select a marine transporter who has the best protection against these new threats.