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Maritime Intelligence and Security: Emergence of Limited Strategic Partnerships Between Physical and Cyber Threat Actors

The maritime transportation industry is global critical infrastructure domain currently experiencing emerging cyber threats within their navigation, communications and operations systems. Shipping moves 90% of the goods around planet - a small, targeted, prolonged cyber attack against a specific vessel(s)/strategic port facility to cause disruption can cripple the global supply chain. Increased trend of hacking shipboard systems for the purpose of theft, piracy or disruption. Most shipboard systems developed without consideration for security leaving vulnerabilities open to cyber exploits. Organized cyber threat actors are forming limited strategic partnerships across physical and digital worlds. These actors are defined by exceptionally environmental scanning in the search of new criminal, terrorist enterprises. Primary focus of maritime has rested myopically on threat of piracy/kidnapping. Culture and delayed reactive nature of industry is primary hindrance as to serious nature of cyber threat faced and economic, strategic and political value to both defender and attacker.


Ms Cherine Abdalla, Cyber Threat Intelligence Researcher, Solutionary, USA

Cherine Abdalla works on the Security Engineering Research Team for Solutionary, Inc., which is under the larger umbrella of NTT Group Security. She has lead responsibility to direct the full integration of traditional intelligence analysis within the cyber security framework for targeted threat intelligence. Her current research and doctoral proposal is focused on the maritime transportation industry as a global critical infrastructure domain and the emergence of organized threat actors that are forming limited strategic partnerships across both physical and digital worlds targeting this domain for economic, strategic and political value. She currently holds two MSc's in both Intelligence Analysis and Security Studies, as well as, Information Assurance/Cybersecurity from the University of Detroit Mercy and certifications in Critical Infrastructure Protection from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and FEMA.