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MSC confirms malware attack caused website outage

Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC) has confirmed that a malware attack caused a data centre outage which led to its main customer facing websites being down for several days.

The outage at its headquarters in Geneva led to MSC.com and myMSC being offline over the Easter weekend and only back in service on Wednesday.

Explaining what had caused the outage MSC confirmed earlier suspicions that it was a malware attack. “After a thorough investigation, we confirmed that it was confined to a limited number of physical computer systems in Geneva only and we determined that it was a malware attack based on an engineered targeted vulnerability,” the company said.

“We have shared as per industry standards the malware with our technology partners so that mitigations could be made available not only to us.”

The shipping line said it would not be commenting further in detail at present as it would be “counter productive from a security perspective”.

In terms of what MSC was doing to prevent future cyber-attacks the company said: “MSC is very conscious of the perennial threat of cyber-security in the shipping industry and we adopt all necessary security protocols in all our communications and business transactions. In addition to these specific protocols, we have other confidential measures and processes in place, such as regular cyber-security training for employees on shore and at sea.

“Furthermore, we are in the process of continuous evolution of our internal IT systems both from software and infrastructure perspective.”

MSC assured customers that it was safe to open and communicate via email with the company.

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