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China Navigation orders connected ECDIS for 36 ships

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China Navigation has ordered Sperry Marine Connected ECDIS for 36 vessels to increase cyber security and simplify chart data transfer.

The bulk and liner operator will upgrade 24 bulk carriers and 12 containerships with Connected ECDIS. The new systems will simplify and secure the transfer of chart data from back of bridge to the regulated navigation systems, said Sperry Marine.

Removing the need to transfer chart data on USB sticks improves cyber risk management by removing the risk of infection from the USB stick. Navigation chart updates will instead be handled digitally though Sperry Marine’s Secure Maritime Gateway (SMG).

“A key component of the cyber security defences available to ship operators, the SMG uses multiple firewalls and a ‘demilitarised zone’ as a staging post between front and back of bridge to ensure there is no direct connection between the navigation systems and the ship’s main IT network. The system allows secure transfer of chart updates from any compliant data provider,” said Sperry Marine.

“We wanted to reduce the reliance on manual ECDIS updates and mitigate cyber risk by removing USBs from the chart update process,” said Gerry Bonner, General Manager Fleet Services, The China Navigation Company. “With cyber security incidents presenting a major concern for shipping, Sperry Marine’s Connected ECDIS gives us the opportunity to drive digitalization in our fleet, improve operational efficiency and increase cyber safety.”

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