Subex and SkyLab team up to secure the shipping industry

Subex, a provider of digital trust, Internet of Things (IoT) and Operational Technology (OT) cybersecurity solutions, and SkyLab, a in 5G Multi-Access Edge Computing (MEC) and Industrial IoT company have announced a partnership to offer IoT and OT cybersecurity solutions and services to the maritime sector.

These solutions offered jointly by Subex and SkyLab have been successfully deployed and are already securing ships and maritime infrastructure across oceans. The industry can look up to this partnership to protect its critical assets from cyberattacks and cybercrime.

This partnership will help boost the overall cybersecurity posture of the maritime industry as ships, offshore and onshore maritime assets, communication channels and shipping infrastructure will now receive the highest levels of cybersecurity protection, threat risk management support, solutions, and services.

According to Subex’s research conducted using data from its global honeypot, shipping companies around the globe were attacked almost 1.5 million times in the last 30 days. Of these, over 64,000 attacks were highly sophisticated and carried out using complex malware and breach tactics. Social engineering, deception, and traffic manipulation were all used to create breaches and enable intrusion into core and peripheral infrastructure.

Targets for these attacks include datacenters, command and control infrastructure, navigation systems, power, and life support systems, among others. The increase in volume also increases the chances of a successful breach. Thus, the industry continues to be at risk.       

In addition to the rising threat to maritime infrastructure, there is also the secondary threat of potentially significant losses caused by the loss of shipping days, delays in transit of goods, damage to critical infrastructure, loss of either customer or commercially sensitive data, and ransom demands. In one incident off the coast of the United States, hackers tried to take over the navigation systems of a ship and ram the vessel into a port. It was with much difficulty that the crew was able to gain control and prevent a catastrophe.   

The International Maritime Organization (IMO), a United Nations specialised agency with responsibility for the safety and security of shipping and the prevention of pollution by ships, has also recognised the importance and urgency required to tackle the challenges posed by cybersecurity risks. IMO has issued MSC-FAL.1/Circ.3 Guidelines on maritime cyber risk management and adopted resolution MSC.428(98) encouraging administrations to ensure that cyber risks are appropriately addressed in existing safety management systems before the first annual verification of the company’s Document of Compliance after 1st January 2021.

Through this partnership, Subex and SkyLab will be jointly offering cybersecurity solutions and services, including Security Operations Center services, to improve overall maritime cybersecurity posture and cyber-resilience.

Commenting on the partnership, Vinod Kumar, Managing Director & CEO, Subex, said, “This alliance combines Subex’s deep expertise in cybersecurity and SkyLab’s strengths in 4G/5G mobile edge computing and core networking technologies to reliably accelerate, monitor and inspect traffic whilst adapting to dynamic connectivity conditions at sea.  This association will help secure the industry and ensure compliance to standards whilst offering reliable protection to both critical and non-critical systems.

“We are delighted to partner Subex in addressing one of the core concerns of the shipping industry – cybersecurity. Together, we endeavour to empower reliable, secured, and cyber-resilient shipping lanes globally by partnering maritime stakeholders, and enable them to secure their operations, assets, people as well as data,” said Stephen Ho, Group Chief Operating Officer, SkyLab.

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