ABS Awarded Maritime Cybersecurity Research Contract

Awards, Classification Societies, IT and Communications, Marine Equipment Products and Services, Maritime Fraud, Safety and Security, Technical, Technology — By on October 7, 2016 at 9:37 PM
Howard Fireman

Howard Fireman

ABS directs Joint Industry Development Project to determine the direction of cybersecurity in the maritime industry.

(Houston) ABS, a leading provider of classification and technical services to the global marine and offshore industries, has been awarded a research contract by the Maritime Security Center (MSC) – a U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Center of Excellence, led by Stevens Institute of Technology – for a two-year research program focused on defining the future of cybersecurity for the maritime industry. Study participants, which include DHS and the Department of Defense, will focus on key areas that will help define future research and guidance.

“Cybersecurity incursions and threats to the Marine Transportation System (MTS) and port facilities throughout the country are increasing,” says Dr. Hady Salloum, Director of MSC. “This research project will support the missions of the DHS Center of Excellence and the U.S. Coast Guard to address these concerns and vulnerabilities and will identify policies and risk management strategies to bolster the cybersecurity posture of the MTS enterprise.”

The MSC-sponsored research project has a number of significant objectives that include defining risk-based performance standards better, developing a maritime-specific framework for cyber policy, identifying critical points of cybersecurity failure, developing design requirements for a maritime cyber test-bed and investigating quantitative analysis tools to determine the effectiveness of cyber detection and deterrent strategies.

“Cybersecurity is one of the most pressing and evolving technical and operational challenges impacting the maritime industry today,” says ABS Chief Technology Officer Howard Fireman. “Our goal with this research program is to leverage the skills and expertise of leading thinkers to build a framework the industry can follow to contend with cyber challenges.”

Safety and environmental protection are fundamental to ABS; so the need to expand the concept of cybersecurity was apparent. ABS assembled a cyber team and introduced the ABS CyberSafety™ program in February 2016. ABS CyberSafety is the industry’s first risk-based management program for asset owners and operators to apply best practice approaches to cybersecurity, automated systems safety, data integrity and software verification. ABS launched the ABS CyberSafety Laboratory earlier this year with a team of experts to prove, analyze and test data integrity and cybersecurity concepts.

About ABS
Founded in 1862, ABS is a leading international classification society devoted to promoting the security of life and property and preserving the natural environment through the development and verification of standards for the design, construction and operational maintenance of marine and offshore assets.

About Stevens Institute of Technology
Stevens Institute of Technology, The Innovation University®, is a premier, private research university situated in Hoboken, N.J. overlooking the Manhattan skyline. Founded in 1870, technological innovation has been the hallmark and legacy of Stevens’ education and research programs for more than 145 years. Within the university’s three schools and one college, 6,600 undergraduate and graduate students collaborate with more than 300 full-time faculty members in an interdisciplinary, student-centric, entrepreneurial environment to advance the frontiers of science and leverage technology to confront global challenges. Stevens is home to three national research centers of excellence, as well as joint research programs focused on critical industries such as healthcare, energy, finance, defense, maritime security, STEM education and coastal sustainability. The university is consistently ranked among the nation’s elite for return on investment for students, career services programs and mid-career salaries of alumni. Stevens is in the midst of a 10-year strategic plan, The Future. Ours to Create., designed to further extend the Stevens legacy to create a forward-looking and far-reaching institution with global impact.

About the Maritime Security Center
The Maritime Security Center (MSC) is a Department of Homeland Security Science & Technology Directorate (S&T) Center of Excellence in port and maritime security, led by Stevens Institute of Technology. MSC conducts innovative research, develops new tools and technologies and provides relevant maritime security-focused educational programs to enhance the nation’s maritime domain awareness, the resiliency of our Marine Transportation System (MTS) and the technical skills and leadership capabilities of our current and prospective maritime security workforce.

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