Maritime Cybersecurity Operations Centre opens in Singapore

(l-r) Teo Chin Hock, Cyber Security Agency of Singapore; Vincent Chong, ST Engineering; Quah Ley Hoon, MPA; and Ravinder Singh, ST Engineering

The Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) has opened a new Maritime Cybersecurity Operations Centre (MSOC), to provide early detection, monitoring, analysis and response to potential cyber-attacks on the port state’s critical maritime information infrastructure.

The MSOC will be operated by ST Engineering at its Singapore Hub, and will conduct 24/7 monitoring and correlate data activities across all maritime Critical Information Infrastructure (CII) systems.

MPA says that the facility will have the capability to detect and monitor cyber-attacks by analysing activities in the IT environment, recognise anomalies and threats, and then initiate a response using a range of technology systems.

Key data linkages will also be established between MSOC and Singapore’s Port Operations Control Centre, in order to respond to cyber incidents in a more collaborative manner.

“Cyber threats come in many forms and have been rising steadily across the globe. As the world’s busiest transhipment hub, it is important that we safeguard our maritime and port critical infrastructure to prevent a major disruption to port operations and delivery of services,” said Niam Chiang Meng, Chairman of the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA).

In addition to setting up MSOC, MPA has also introduced other initiatives to strengthen the cybersecurity readiness of the maritime sector, having collaborated with the Singapore Shipping Association and Singapore Polytechnic to develop a new Maritime Cybersecurity (Intermediate) Training Course for maritime personnel.

The one-day course, to be rolled out in first half of next year, will be built upon an existing basic course to allow participants to further expand their knowledge of cyber risk management and counter-measures from a practitioner’s perspective.

Other new cyber initiatives include a Maritime Cybersecurity Research programme that has been created as a collaborative effort between MPA, the Singapore Maritime Institute and other local institutes of higher learning, which will focus on the protection of shipboard systems from cyber threats, and an expansion of the existing Port Authorities Roundtable initiative to encourage greater sharing of intelligence relating to maritime cybersecurity.

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Rob O'Dwyer

Rob is Chief Network Officer and one of the founders of Smart Maritime Network. He also serves as Chairman of the Smart Maritime Council. Rob has worked in the maritime technology sector since 2005, managing editorial for a range of leading publications in the transport and logistics sector. Get in touch by email by clicking here, or on LinkedIn by clicking here.

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