MaCRA

  • Per-voyage and fleet-specific cyber threat profiling solution
  • Addresses vast range of on-board IT and operational technology, routes and cargo
  • Leverages unique real ships IT and OT vulnerabilities data from Cyber-SHIP Lab
  • Dynamically correlates each voyage’s unique cyber risk signature with attacker motivations

MaCRA®, Maritime Cyber Risk Assessment framework, is a unique solution for maritime cyber risk assessment. It dynamically responds to changes made within ships’ systems and to threats associated with voyage-specific route and cargo contexts to provide real-time, operation-specific cyber risk assessment. MaCRA is a unique and valuable toolkit which also addresses the International Maritime Organization’s 2021 guidance requiring ship operators to systematically address cyber security.

In 2021, MaCRA was awarded the Lloyd's Science of Risk Prize and won the UK’s National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) ‘Cyber Den’ competition. The project has also secured funding to drive the technical development of commercial tooling from MarRI-UK. These developments build on initial support from the UK Government Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport’s CyberASAP academic cyber-security start-up accelerator programme.

The beta version of MaCRA’s software tooling will be released early in 2022.

We are keen to collaborate with additional shipping operators, insurers and specialist consultancies to share early insight into the development, and we are open to conversations with investors interested in working with us on the commercialisation of this opportunity.

 

MaCRA’s adaptive risk assessment ability is built around the insight that shipping’s myriad cyber risks are amenable to predictive modelling and mitigation through systematic analysis of vessel-type, on-board IT and operational technology systems, route and cargo variables. MaCRA dynamically correlates each voyage and fleet’s cyber risk signature with probable attacker motivations.

MaCRA is an industrial-strength software as a service solution accessible via handheld and desktop applications. Various threat and risk assessment services and dashboards will be available for single ship or entire fleet profiling. The system is underpinned by peer-reviewed research findings from the University of Plymouth Maritime Cyber Threats Research Group published in the WMU Journal of Maritime Affairs in 2019.

International shipping is vital to world economic wellbeing. However, individual vessels can be in service for 30 years or more with legacy onboard IT and OT systems potentially vulnerable to modern cyber attack, while accelerating maritime industry digitalisation presents cyber attackers with plentiful sabotage opportunities.

Translation of MaCRA research into a commercial cyber security solution began with MarRI-UK research initiative funding to address the urgent need to secure maritime supply chains from burgeoning cyber security threats.

MaCRA research informs the Cyber-MAR project, a European Union-funded initiative developing a maritime sector-specific cybersecurity simulation environment. In January 2021, the University of Plymouth Maritime Cyber Threats Research Group’s new and unique hardware-based Cyber-SHIP Lab began providing MaCRA with real ships' systems' cyber vulnerabilities data.

The MaCRA team

  • Dr Kimberly Tam – co-author of MaCRA and Academic Lead. Worked in industry (Hewlett Packard) and USA government labs (Sandia and MIT Lincoln Lab). 
  • Professor Kevin Jones – 20 years' Silicon Valley experience in executive and technical roles; instrumental in raising more than $20M in start-up environments.

  • Kevin Forshaw – more than 25 years' maritime engagement experience in academia leading to the Research England-supported £3.2m investment in the University’s Cyber-SHIP Laboratory.
  • Software development team members.

Our people

At present, MaCRA has no vacancies to fill. We look forward to offering more opportunities to join the team in future.