SSA and ClassNK sign MoU to establish framework for cooperation on cyber security research activities

Source: press release, 8 December 2022

Front, from left, Michael Phoon, Executive Director, SSA; Capt. Naoki Saito, General Manager of Maritime Education and Training Certification Department, ClassNK; seated, from left, Yasushi Seto, Regional Manager, ClassNK Singapore Office; and Teo Teng Seng, Board Advisor of Pacific International Lines Logistics & Chairman of SSA Digital Transformation Committee
Front, from left, Michael Phoon, Executive Director, SSA; Capt. Naoki Saito, General Manager of Maritime Education and Training Certification Department, ClassNK; seated, from left, Yasushi Seto, Regional Manager, ClassNK Singapore Office; and Teo Teng Seng, Board Advisor of Pacific International Lines Logistics & Chairman of SSA Digital Transformation Committee (photo: SSA)

Singapore Shipping Association (SSA) and ClassNK have signed an MoU (memorandum of understanding) to establish a framework for cooperation in cyber security research activities.

Cyber security has been acknowledged by the maritime industry as a key element to keep ships safe during operations, and to ensure its solid and steady digital transformation in coming years. Singapore, being a global maritime hub that connects regional and global markets, is ideally positioned for such research activities that eventually contributes to reinforce cyber resilience of the global supply chain to be launched.

With the signing of the MOU, the two parties will conduct joint basic research concerning establishing vessels’ cyber security operation centres that provide crew members with support from onshore in monitoring and responding to cyber events onboard. Based on expertise and experience gained from this research, SSA and ClassNK will work on drafting a joint white paper on the finding of the research and developing education and training plans of personnel to work for vessels’ cyber security operation centres jointly.

Michael Phoon, Executive Director of Singapore Shipping Association says, “Cyber-risk for ships are growing, as our industry gets more digitally sophisticated, integrated, and automated. Today, many shipping companies are focused on providing better welfare onboard for their seafarers, such as internet connectivity for them to stay in touch with their family and friends. That means, the ability of onshore personnel to gain access to decisive and strategic cyber threat intelligence and insights is critical. This SSA-ClassNK partnership is timely as it forms the basis of efficient operations of cyber security operation centers aimed at supporting onboard cyber needs.”

Capt. Naoki Saito, General Manager of Maritime Education and Training Certification Department, ClassNK says, “Recognising that cyber security is the challenge that should be tackled with the collaborative approach of the industry, ClassNK firmly believes international frameworks can commit to helping the industry in raising awareness and studying the real-world risks. In this light, ClassNK is very glad to expand its partnerships with the driving leader in the sector in Singapore, a global maritime hub. We are committing to take this opportunity to identify the possible measures to establish the best practice on the issue. We hope to bridge the outcome from the MOU to contribute to ensure the regional and global growth of maritime transportation in a secured manner.”