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Cyber Pirates Attack Maritime Industry Twice in One Week
Jaime Reints4 min read

The Friday Five: Cyber Pirates Hit Global Shipping Industry Twice

Cyber Pirates Hit Global Shipping Industry Nearing Peak Season - Bloomberg 

The International Maritime Organization's website is down and CMA CGM continues investigation following a ransomware attack this week.

What’s clear, the maritime world’s cybersecurity problem is getting deeper. The International Maritime Organization was hit by what the global regulator called a “sophisticated cyberattack,” just days after a hack at CMA CGM SA, the world’s fourth-biggest container liner, operations were crippled alongside electronic systems. 

The incident at the French ocean carrier was apparently a ransomware attack and CMA CGM suspects that data was stolen. It’s unclear how far hackers got with the IMO, a high-profile agency attached to the United Nations, but the regulator’s website was still down as of this morning. 

Experts say most ransomware and other intrusions are financially motivated, and regulators such as the IMO can be a target if hackers suspect they hold valuable data. 

The two incidents do not appear to be related. 

Container lines maxing out capacity to meet US import surge - JOC

In a panel talk earlier this week, Executives at three of the largest container lines stated “most, if not all” of their available ships were on the water now, thanks to unexpectedly high demand from US shippers.

Usable weekly capacity on Asia to North America trade was up 12% year-over-year at 523,000 TEU as of September 1.  

However, containerized US import volumes from Asia have skyrocketed over 90 percent between March and August. Rates from China to the US West Coast are also skyrocketing, up 190% from a year ago, at $3,863 per FEU according to the Shanghai Containerized Freight Index (SCFI).

Shippers are continuing to expect high spot rates, cargo rolls, and tight chassis supply to persist through the fourth quarter as a V-shaped recovery continues. The bottom line, there are just not a lot of ships available to really increase the capacity that is needed to support demand. 

India's container crisis could last a further three months, say forwarders - Loadstar 

On Thursday, the Engineering Export Promotion Council of India (EEPC) called on the government to set up a regulator to rein-in what it claimed were “monopolistic” practices of shipping lines.

The result of increased demand, reduced imports and port rotation issues have caused an “acute” space issue and container shortages that may last another 3 months as congestion continues to builds up at the port of Colombo in Sri Lanka.

Indian exports have fallen 12.6% year-on-year decrease in August, leaving shippers bemused at the lack of available containers.

Vessels that were idle during the corona-lockdown were re-routed to more profitable trades on the transpacific, leading to rippling supply and demand gaps for major intra-Asia trading routes. 

How Amazon hid its safety crisis - Reveal News  

On Thursday, announced more than 19,000 of its workers, including ones at Whole Foods Market stores, have tested positive for the coronavirus as of Sept. 19. Amazon emphasized that it is at a lower infection rate than the U.S. population’s, citing Johns Hopkins University numbers.

Amazon has been on a hiring spree this year due to high demand for deliveries, and last month, it announced it would hire an additional 100,000 workers. 

This comes amid harsh criticism that the organization has not done enough to keep its warehouse workers safe. New internal data reports reveal Amazon’s injury rates have gone up each of the past four years. In 2019, Amazon fulfillment centers recorded 14,000 serious injuries – those requiring days off or job restrictions. The overall rate of 7.7 serious injuries per 100 employees was 33% higher than in 2016 and nearly double the most recent industry standard.

Contrary to Amazon’s public claims, injury rates have spiked during the weeks of Prime Day and Cyber Monday. Those two weeks specifically had the highest rate of serious injuries for all of 2019.

Walmart, Target to hold their own sales events alongside Amazon Prime Day - CNET 

Amazon's Prime Day typically takes place in mid-July, but the shopping event was delayed this year due to the coronavirus pandemic. 

On Sunday, Amazon officially announced Prime Day would be October 13 and 14 this year. Not to be outdone, Target and Walmart quickly followed suit, announcing deal days of their own.

On Monday, Walmart said it'll be holding a "Big Save" online event that runs Oct. 11-15.

Then on Tuesday, Target laid out plans for its "Deal Days" event, which will happen on Oct. 13-14.

No doubt, parcel shipping networks will be packed for the second half of October. 


As always, Happy Friday, folks! 

Don’t forget to check out last week’s news and come back next week for the following Friday Five Logistics News Roundup!


Jaime Reints

Jaime is VP of Marketing at