Inmarsat, global provider of mobile satellite communications, has published a new and authoritative guide to the information and communication technology that plays an increasingly critical role in the safety, efficiency and environmental performance of ships.
The “Best Practice Information and Communications Technology (ICT) Recommendations”, published by the Inmarsat Research Programme, offers guidance on maximising uptime and minimising cyber-vulnerabilities of onboard networks and automated systems. The comprehensive guide covers the design, deployment and ongoing operational management of shipboard ICT systems.
The new Inmarsat guide outlines how to design a software environment that prioritises uptime but is also easy to maintain long-term in terms of management and planning for upgrades. It offers a framework for developing IT policy and advice on best practice record-keeping for audits such as the OCIMF Tanker Management Self-Assessment scheme. Other topics include satellite connection options, IoT applications and crew access, and even the benefits of virtual servers/workstations for scalability and speedier recovery after failure.
Guidance is also provided covering expectations for cybersecurity, in the context of coming revisions to the International Ship Management code. In fact, cybersecurity is explored from multiple perspectives, including crew education and drills, and approaches to IT system lockdown/hardening.