NavBox cyber secure updating gets DNV GL approval

Malcolm Latarche

Malcolm Latarche · 09 April 2019


E-Navigation specialist Navtor has received recognition of its innovative NavBox solution with ‘cyber secure’ certification (IEC 61162-460 Gateway) from DNV GL. NavBox, which automates the distribution and updates of digital charts, publications and other navigational data, now guarantees both complete regulatory compliance and security for an increasingly digitised generation of shipowners and operators.

NavBox offers a range of security features including an encrypted connection – transferring data in a format only recognised by Navtor software – CRC checks, the non-transferral of executable files (a key source of malware) and communication through secure servers. The unit also operates as a ‘blackbox’, with no screen, keyboard or mouse, diminishing risk from human interaction.

The company designed NavBox to slash administration duties for navigators, allowing for greater efficiency and resource use, while ensuring that the very latest charts and publications are always available on-board, leading to total regulatory compliance. In addition to the vessel-based benefits, NavBox also provides shore-based teams with a full insight into chart usage, equating to more effective cost control and fleet management. The solution is available as PC software or as a separate hardware box that connects to a vessel ECDIS.

NAVTOR’s announcement came the day before the Norwegian Shipowners Association Annual Conference in Oslo on 9 April, where it will reveal, as part of its Outlook Report 2019, that cybercrime is its members’ number one security concern.

A viewpoint shared by Tor Svanes, CEO of Navtor, who said “If we look at the past two years we can identify a worrying increase of cyber criminal activity, with high profile attacks targeting, amongst others, key shipping businesses including Maersk and COSCO, as well as ports such as San Diego and Barcelona,“ Svanes warned, adding: “And this is really just the tip of the iceberg.”

“e-Navigation is the cornerstone of smart shipping,” Svanes stated, “enabling optimal routing, fuel use, efficiency, operational intelligence and communication between assets at sea and offices on shore. NavBox is a key component of our market leading e-Navigation proposition, so ensuring its resilience against any form of rogue cyber activity was a clear priority for us. With the progress towards increased automation and, in some case, complete vessel autonomy the importance of e-Navigation will flourish – unfortunately so will the frequency of cyberattacks. With this notification from DNV GL our customers can be sure they are prepared for whatever digital threats lie on the horizon, allowing them to focus on charting the optimal route forward into the future.”

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