Maersk says booking system back in action after cyber attack

Hackers strike across Europe, sparking widespread disruption

Lars Jensen, CEO of maritime cyber security consultant Cyberkeel and CEO at SeaIntelligence Consulting, said in an article on LinkedIn that Maersk Line ships almost 3,300 TEUs per hour, generating a revenue stream of $2.9 million per hour.

The Ministry of Shipping said that the operator informed that this disruption is a outcome of a worldwide disruption being faced by them because of a cyber attack. It is assessing the aggregate impact on its businesses and implementing business continuity plans.

Maersk added the source of the outage is not known, but the problem could be global. "We will update when we have more information", the spokesperson said in a written statement issued globally.

Coordinating ship arrivals, unloading containers and then scheduling storage and trucks to move products out of ports requires a high degree of coordination and efficiency. "We have specifically warned repeatedly against the likelihood of ransomware (and similar) attacks", he said.

Maersk's APM Terminals unit, which operates 76 port and terminal facilities in 59 countries around the globe, is impacted at a number of sites, including the Port of NY and New Jersey, the largest port on the U.S. East Coast, and Rotterdam in The Netherlands, Europe's largest harbor.

Netherlands-based shipping company TNT Express, now a subsidiary of FedEx, also said it was experiencing system interference following a global cyber attack, however, it did not specify whether or not it was related to the Petya attack. "APM Terminals is impacted in a number of ports", the company said.

A spokesman for APM Terminals in Rotterdam, Tom Boyd, said the manual process was tough work.

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In Spain, Maersk's APM terminal at the port in Barcelona is now closed, according to an official. It is unclear whether the terminal's gate operations will be opened tomorrow.

In India, private port operator APM Terminals Pipavav's operations to have partially been hit by Petya.

In Aarhus, the biggest container terminal in Maersk's home country Denmark, APM Terminals was using alternative methods of communication when loading and offloading vessels. The company is working on a technical recovery plan, Clerc said.

However, the carrier said it wasn't taking new bookings or offering quotes at the affected terminals.

It said, "We are responding to the situation to contain and limit the impact and uphold operations".

Meanwhile, in a separate incident Dutch police were also hit by computer chaos on Wednesday, but stressed it was unrelated to the cyberattack.

The virus, similar to the WannaCry virus, which hit earlier this year, has also hit global advertising house WPP, whose employees were told to turn off their computers, and Ukranian government systems.

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