Maersk plagued by global IT breakdown caused by cyber attack

The breakdown affected all business units at Maersk, including container shipping, port and tug boat operations, oil and gas production, drilling services, and oil tankers, the company said.

The IT breakdown could extend across the company’s global operations, a spokeswoman said, but could not say how Maersk’s operations were impacted.

With a fleet of more than 600 container vessels, Maersk is the world’s biggest shipping company with a market share of around 16 percent. The company handles around 25 percent of all containers shipped on the key Asia-Europe route.

Maersk’s port operator APM Terminals was also hit as 17 shipping container terminals run by APM Terminals had been hacked, including two in Rotterdam and 15 in other parts of the world, also in the US. The Petya virus seems to have spread worldwide from infected bookkeeping software in the Ukraine.

In Rotterdam, after almost two weeks, the terminals are slowly recovering from the attack. The damage caused by the cyber attack runs in the tens of millions of Euro’s, the reputation damage is enormous.

The virus was a ransomware virus but it was impossible to pay the ransom as there were no working links to effect payment. Obviously the attack was set up solely to cause as much damage to the economy as possible. Nice.

The damage could be so big as the Maersk’s IT was not protected by firewalls, low level IT architecture from way back. These days networks are split in many groups with there own firewalls in place. A virus in a group cannot spread to the other groups. In Maersk it was one big happy family were all computers worldwide could freely communicate with each other. How stupid and naive can you be.

I already said that they should instantly fire the entire IT department but as it turns out now the top management, at least in Rotterdam, last year refused such an upgrade as the terminals, one by one, had to close for a couple of days. So I say now fire the top management as they are responsible for this disaster.

RIIIIGGGHHHTTT! That will be happening real soon. Probably about the time NMC catches up on their three year old, six to nine month backlog and the Deputy Commandant for Operation (DCO) and the civilian in charge of Merchant Marine Credentials (MMC) are cashiered.