Newcastle-based marine insurer North P&I has been awarded the government-backed Cyber Essentials Plus accreditation as it continues to show its commitment to cyber security.

The accreditation is awarded to companies who have successfully implemented systems to protect themselves against common cyber threats. With constant technical innovation, new dangers are frequently coming to the surface, therefore the Cyber Essentials scheme is designed to improve the resilience of UK businesses to the most common cyber security threats.

The marine industry has been affected by cyber-attacks in the past. In 2017 container Danish shipping container company Maersk was the victim of a piece of malware called NotPetya which ultimately led to the company losing €300 million.

James Holmes, North P&I Club’s Chief Information Officer, commented: “The Cyber Essentials Plus accreditation reflects our ongoing commitment to cyber security, and provides our ship-owner members with peace of mind that we take the protection of IT and data facilities seriously.”

Cyber Essentials Plus is a more advanced level of assurance and includes an additional internal scan and on-site assessment. The scheme requires companies to implement five key controls: boundary firewalls and internet gateways, secure configuration, access control, malware protection and patch management.

Holmes added: “With regular reports of high-profile businesses falling victim to cybercrime, it’s the responsibility of every organisation to ensure they are adequately protected. North is actively promoting awareness and discussion of the importance of cyber security with both staff and our ship owner members – we are doing this through our messaging and cyber security loss prevention initiatives and insights, which have been rolled out both in the UK and overseas.”