The Norwegian National Security Authority (NSM) is warning the maritime industry of the increasing number of cyberattacks targeting both the maritime and oil and gas sectors.
The agency said the scope of the targeted scheme have been global, but companies in the United States of America, Europe, and the Middle East have been the main targets since June.
"The threat actors have demonstrated high ability and capacity to conduct their operations. It has been reported attempts of digital activity with malicious intent against some companies ... companies and organizations should be prepared for continuous activity in the short to medium term," NSM added.
The cyber campaigns were said to be using social engineering techniques in e-mails and in personal messages through various social media platforms which attacks the users by asking them to install malware on the computer, then gathering information about the user, their employer or other users connected to them; and further spreading the attacks in their networks.
NSM National Cyber Security Centre, the Norwegian Maritime Authority, and the Norwegian Shipowners’ Association assessed that all types of ships and shipowners’ land-based infrastructure can be vulnerable to cyber incidents within the maritime sector.
It noted further those ship owners that operate in ISPS/MARSEC level two areas or higher “should be aware of the situation.”
The Norwegian agencies then urged ship owners and employees within the maritime sector “to show increased vigilance”.
"Although the NSM’s information letter is directed at Norwegian companies, we advise all ship operators and companies with responsibility for infrastructure onboard ships to continuously monitor and review digital security," it added.