Cyber terrorists could sink cruise ships
CRUISE ships could be sunk by cyber terrorists, official Government guidance has warned in a drive to improve protection from online attacks.
Vessels could be vulnerable to “kidnap, piracy, fraud [and] theft of cargo” if their computer systems were compromised, the Department for Transport said.
A hack could even result in “risk to life and/or the loss of the ship”, the guidance said.
The concern is that hackers could distort mapping equipment or the ship’s controls, causing it to hit another vessel or run aground. The dire warnings were made in a “Cyber Security for Ships” code of practice, written by the Institution of Engineering and Technology and distributed by Whitehall.
Experts said that any ship that relied on a computer system – such as electronic location trackers – could be vul- nerable and urged companies to make sure crews were trained in “old seamanship” to help them retain control.
Prof Alan Woodward, of the Surrey Centre for Cyber Security, told The Sunday Telegraph that tests had shown super yachts could be hacked.
“We have to be aware that signals can be spoofed. We’re not just talking about super tankers and big cruise ships,” he said. “Basically anything that has any form of automation on it, including yachts, could be vulnerable.”