The annual meeting covered all transportation modes and addressed topics of interest to policy makers, administrators, practitioners, researchers and representatives of government, industry and academic institutions.  It was pointed out that the failure, unintended misuse, or exploitation of cyber systems controlling functions such as navigation, propulsion, cargo control, and security and environmental monitoring could have significant consequences.

''All activities must take place against the backdrop of the training, education and policies needed to promote a culture of cybersecurity,” said Capt. Verne Gifford,Coast Guard’s Director of Inspections and Compliance

He explained the three strategic priorities in the Coast Guard’s Cyber Strategy, released in 2015, and explained that the likelihood of an incident is near certain.

“Vulnerability increases with every new device,” said Gifford.

Mr. Gifford outlined some ongoing, collaborative, Coast Guard initiatives:

  • Working the National Institute of Standards and Technology to develop a Maritime Transportation System Implementation Guide
  • Review of existing policy for cyber updates (drafting NVIC for domestic policy and looking at IMO proposal)
  • Standardizing terms and definitions
  • Clarifying notification procedures
  • Collaborating with NIST to evaluate guidance and tools for industry on risk reduction processes

The Coast Guard notes that the marine industry is making increasing use of cyber technology.

“While these technologies generally improve efficiency and reliability, they also introduce risk,” said Gifford. “The failure, unintended misuse or exploitation of systems controlling functions such as navigation, propulsion, cargo control and security and environmental monitoring could have significant consequences.”

Source: USCG Blog