Panama Boosts Maritime Cyber Security

Panama, the world's largest merchant shipping flag state, is taking the initiative  to improve the cyber security and safety of  the many maritime vessels that fly its flag. The maritime business is being transformed by the complex interaction between multiple factors, including the growing economic and political power of China and US-China competition. 

Now,  the Panama Maritime Authority (PMA) has announced the establishment of its Cyber Incident Voluntary Reporting Scheme. 

The aim is to better understand the cyber threats that vessels are actually exposed to and to seek more pragmatic and effective measures to control the cyber risks. The scheme encourages all Panama-flagged vessels to report detected cyber incidents to PMA. This aims to better help the authority better understand the cyber threats that vessels face and seeks pragmatic and effective measures to control these risks.

The scheme encourages all Panama-flagged vessels to report detected cyber incidents to the PMA. “As the world largest flag state, it is our duty to take action against cyber risk and contribute to the safety of maritime transport. On this occasion, we are very happy to conclude an MoU with ClassNK, a leading classification society putting effort into maritime cyber security,” said Rafael Cigarruista, General Director of the PMA.

ClassNK develops rules and standards and conducts certification services in the maritime industry and aims to identify best practices related to ensuring cyber security suitable for shipping and has anagreement with specilast Japanese cyber security firm e5 Lab to conduct a proof of concept (PoC) on ‘Marindows’, a comprehensive digital platform for ships being developed by e5 Lab.

In order to contain and minimise future cyber-threats to international vessels, a new multi-disciplinary approach is needed to replace outdated current practices. By combining initiatives like the International Maritime Code; which enhances and harmonises the safe passage of dangerous goods that could cause damage to the environment, with the United Nations Security Council resolutions that aim to reduce terrorism and piracy threats, the joint powers of global partners and allies could be leveraged to protect international interests more closely.

"As a world largest flag sate, it is our duty to take action against cyber risk and contribute to the safety of maritime transport. In this occasion, we are very happy to conclude a MOU with ClassNK, a leading classification society putting effort into maritime cyber security... By integrating the knowledge and expertise from both flag state and classification society, we are confident in developing measures against cyber risks that are appropriate for the industry to deploy." PMA said in a statement. 

Panama Maritime Authority:   Lloyds Register:   CSIS:   Port Technology:    TechSecurityUpdate:    Sea Wanderer

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