Cybersecurity challenges in the maritime sector

Frank Akpan, Gueltoum Bendiab, Stavros Shiaeles*, Stavros Karamperidis, Michalis Michaloliakos

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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Cyberattacks have been rapidly increasing over the years, resulting to big financial losses to businesses for recovery, regulatory sanctions, as well as collateral damages, such as reputation and trust. In this respect, the maritime sector, which until now was considered safe due to the lack of Internet connectivity and the isolated nature of ships in the sea, is showing a 900% increase in cybersecurity breaches on operational technology as it enters the digital era. Although some research is being conducted in this area, maritime cybersecurity has not been deeply investigated. Hence, this paper provides a close investigation of the landscape of cybersecurity in the maritime sector with the aim of highlighting security problems and challenges. First, it explores the systems available on ships that could be targeted by attackers, their possible vulnerabilities that an attacker could exploit, the consequences if the system is accessed, and actual incidents. Then, it describes and analyses possible mitigation actions that can be utilised in advance to prevent such attacks. Finally, several challenges and open problems are discussed for future research.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)123-138
Number of pages16
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 7 Mar 2022


  • maritime
  • ships
  • cybersecurity
  • vulnerabilities
  • cybercriminals


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