The University of Plymouth has been awarded Government funding to meet the growing demand for technology that will protect the UK’s maritime sector from cyber-attacks.
Experts from the University’s Maritime Cyber Threats Research Group will use a grant from the Maritime Research and Innovation UK (MarRI-UK) initiative to develop an industry-ready solution that ensures crucial cargo keeps reaching the UK’s shores.
The Maritime Cyber Risk Assessment (MaCRA) framework will enable an operator carrying any cargo on any route to quickly assess new threats to the overall system and determine what mitigation is required.
It will take into account factors including vessel type and equipment on board, cargo being carried and vessel routing, with those aspects also being used to determine attacker motivation.
The completed system will be available to all commercial shipping operators and include an app to provide a high-level rapid assessment of where to prioritise mitigation effort, and an accompanying PC version for higher-level analysis of systemic cause.
The principles behind the MaCRA framework were first set out in a study published in the WMU Journal of Maritime Affairs in 2019. This project will develop those principles into a functioning system.