Vega-Reederei Utilizes Inmarsat Fleet Security Solutions 

Henrik König, Company Security Officer Vega-Reederei: “The frequency and severity of network attacks in shipping are growing fast.”

Published Apr 18, 2023 12:54 PM by The Maritime Executive

The ship manager has selected Inmarsat’s comprehensive solution for network protection, with its fleet set to double in size.

Inmarsat, a world leader in global mobile satellite communications, has secured an agreement with long-standing Fleet Xpress customer Vega-Reederei (Vega) to install Fleet Secure Unified Threat Management (UTM) across the Hamburg-based ship manager’s fleet of existing and newbuild vessels.

The deal represents a proactive move to secure Vega’s fleet against growing cyber threats while achieving regulatory compliance as the company rejuvenates with four 1,868 TEU eco-consumption newbuilds and plans to add more new ships to expand in the security-sensitive European coastal services by 2024.  

A 2022 study by Inmarsat and partner Thetius showed almost half of the 200 maritime businesses surveyed reported that they had suffered a cyber-attack in the previous three years. Three percent of those attacks resulted in a ransom being paid by the victim to the attacker at an average cost of $3.1 million. Even without the payment of a direct ransom, the costs to shipping from cyber threats averaged $1.8 million per year over the study period.

Henrik König, Company Security Officer at Vega, said: “Although our vessels have not so far fallen victim to cyber-crime, we are aware that both the frequency and severity of network attacks in shipping are growing fast. As our fleet grows, this threat becomes more significant and difficult to manage. Through Fleet Xpress and Fleet Secure UTM, Inmarsat offers the global coverage and cyber-security capabilities required to keep our managed fleet safe from the risks of an increasingly connected maritime industry.”

Fleet Secure UTM is a part of Inmarsat’s wider cyber-security offering available through Fleet Xpress. The solution is a comprehensive suite of network security tools designed to protect the vessel network. UTM safeguards against cyber-attacks and intrusion from infected devices by intelligently scanning all connected networks for malicious traffic. It also provides real-time digital security status updates, allowing users to monitor and mitigate network threats as they arise.

Crucially for ship managers like Vega, the solution is backed by Inmarsat’s dedicated Cyber Security Operations Centre (CSOC), which offers round-the-clock human support to address customers’ security concerns. The CSOC deploys industry-leading technologies to monitor and detect threats – including the latest methods of attack – across Inmarsat’s core infrastructure, networks, and services. In-house cyber-security experts investigate any irregular activities.

Scott Middleton, Regional Director North Europe Inmarsat Maritime, said: “With Fleet Secure UTM, Vega meets not only the International Maritime Organization’s 2021 requirements on cyber security but also the expectations of its customers, the owners of its managed vessels, who can now rest assured that their ships are comprehensively protected from cyber threats. We would like to thank our partner, Port-IT for its ongoing support with this project and development of Fleet Secure UTM.” 

Inmarsat delivers world-leading, innovative, advanced and exceptionally reliable global mobile communications worldwide – in the air, at sea and on land - enabling a new generation of commercial, government and mission-critical services. Inmarsat is powering the digitalization of the maritime industry, making operations more efficient and safer than ever before. It is driving a new era of inflight passenger services for aviation, while ensuring that aircraft can fly efficiently and safely. Furthermore, Inmarsat is enabling the rapid expansion of the Internet of Things (IoT) and the next wave of world-changing technologies that will underpin the connected society and help build a sustainable future. And now Inmarsat is developing the first-of-its-kind, multi-dimensional communications network of the future, ORCHESTRA.

In November 2021, Inmarsat and Viasat announced the planned combination of the two companies, to create a new leader in global communications. 
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