BIMCO to examine cybersecurity at annual conference

The following is the text of a news release from BIMCO:

(LONDON) — BIMCO, the world’s largest shipping association, will focus on cybersecurity and how to handle a maritime casualty crisis at its next annual conference in Hamburg, Germany, on Nov. 18.

Angus Frew, secretary-general of BIMCO, said: “Hamburg is one of the shipping capitals of the world and home to many BIMCO members, which is why we have chosen it for our annual conference this year. We will run two very interactive and engaging sessions on cybersecurity and on managing a crisis in the aftermath of a maritime casualty — using the latest technology and involving leading experts in each field.

“The goal is for the sessions to be extremely useful for those working directly with these challenges,  but also very engaging for all shipping professionals," Frew said. “We want to draw industry people together for the event to create an excellent opportunity to network and do business.”

A key session at BIMCO’s conference is titled “Cyberattack." Although the industry has yet to witness a cyberattack on a ship, being unprepared could expose shipowners and their ships to commercial, safety and environmental risks. Participants will:

• See a live demonstration of known weaknesses in ship’s systems and how they could potentially be exploited by a hacker during an attack;
• Hear an expert assessment of current cybersecurity levels on board ships;
• Find out more about cyberattacks and countermeasures.

Aron Sorensen, head of BIMCO’s marine department, said: “Two years ago, cybersecurity was just not on the radar for the shipping industry. Since then, we have seen global corporate brands — including Sony — hit the headlines when they fell victim to cyberattacks. BIMCO is taking the lead in developing industry best management practice for cybersecurity on board ships and we aim to share the latest developments during the session.”

Another main session at BIMCO’s conference is titled “From Crisis to Cleanup” and starts with the moment that a bulk carrier, Idle Star, runs aground in a U.S. river, rupturing its bunker tank and spilling fuel oil into the fast flowing river. The session will explore:

* How salvage experts and pollution cleanup specialists deal with such an event;
• How owners and charterers should work together to manage the press as public criticism mounts over the pollution.

Participants will see the drama unfold, vote on the action they would take and can ask questions of the expert speakers.

Other speakers during the conference include BIMCO President Philippe Louis-Dreyfus, VDR President Alfred Hartmann and BIMCO’s shipping economist Peter Sand.

The BIMCO Awards Dinner will take place after the conference. The winners of the five BIMCO award categories will be announced and celebrated.

Find out more online at

By Professional Mariner Staff