For a number of years now the media has been reporting on the increased risk to the maritime and oil and gas industries through Cyber attack. The stories of tilting oil rigs, malware-riddled platforms and hacked ports are well known across the industry and many have first-hand experience of bunkering scams.

Despite the prevalence of such incidents and the awareness that many in the industry seem to understand the devastating impact a Cyber attack could have upon a business, there seems to be remarkably little action taken to mitigate the risk.

Until now.

Templar Executives were brought in as industry experts by membership organisations such as the Security Association for the Maritime Industry (SAMI) and the International Marine Contractors Association (IMCA) to facilitate a day of briefings and workshops with leading figures in the maritime and oil and gas industries. The purpose of the event was to raise awareness and provide practical and easy-to-follow advice on how to improve Cyber Security across the industries.

The event, taking place at SAMI headquarters aboard the HQS Wellington, was introduced by senior representatives from SAMI and IMCA. Templar Executives CEO, Andrew Fitzmaurice, was then invited to brief the delegates on the current Threats and trends in Cyber Security affecting the maritime and oil and gas industries.

Following on from this, a representative from the Baltic and International Maritime Council (BIMCO) gave a briefing on the new Cyber Security guidelines that they have produced. Building on Templar’s Threats and trends presentation, BIMCO explained how the guidelines (due to be published towards the end of this year) will apply to everyone working in the maritime and oil and gas industries.

In the second half of the day the team from Templar developed a series of Cyber incident scenarios which delegates discussed and debated responses. The purpose of the event was to leave attendees ‘uncomfortably educated’ as to the issues facing the maritime and oil and gas sectors; this objective was definitely achieved with very positive feedback received.

It was clear from the discussions that the prevalence of Cyber incidents in the maritime industry are far more than just ‘an IT issue’: Cyber attacks on a vessel of any size or type can have real-world effects on the ability of the Captain, Fleet Manager and Company Security Officer to navigate in a safe and timely manner.

Dealing with a data breach must also include consideration of how information is securely shared with third party stakeholders, including customs officials and other vessels; a focus on people, processes, policies and the culture is essential. For example, implementing an Information Security policy tailored to the maritime environment will mitigate risks presented by malware attacks on engine management systems, and breaches to organisations’ overall security through social media blunders. Not managing these risks effectively can lead to significant commercial disadvantage including operational disruption and delay, reputational damage and loss of revenue.

Templar are pleased and proud to work in collaboration with SAMI and INCA and look forward to continuing to support the maritime and oil and gas industries becoming resilient and Cyber mature industries.

For further information about the event or Templar’s work in helping organisations understand Cyber Security and the impact of the Threats upon their businesses in this digital age, please contact us via our website or email us at