Nagoya crippled by cyber-attack

The port of Nagoya has been crippled by a cyber-attack. Nagoya is one of Japan’s largest container ports. Sources in Japan report that a criminal gang operating a cyber-tool called LockBit 3.0 attempted to demand a ransom from the port and whilst doing so interrupted IT systems. It seems that the attack focused on the terminal operating system of the five container terminals at Nagoya.

The attack commenced on Tuesday and the effects were to halt all crane operations, container yard management and truck management systems. Unsurprisingly, this brought the port to a standstill with reports of queues of trucks outside the terminals. Reports suggest that 20,000 containers were held in queues both entering and leaving the port.

By Thursday 6th July Nagoya Harbour Transportation Association, which represents the terminal operators at the port of Nagoya, said that one terminal had resumed operations and that the other four terminals were expected to recover within the next 24 hours. It commented that the “repair work” on the IT systems had taken longer than expected and this had delayed the resumption of normal operations.

Some reports link LockBit 3.0 to Russia. The US Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency describes LockBit 3.0 as a “ransomware-as-a-service operator” which has experienced some success in the past extorting money from large companies in various sectors, including electronics.

The five container terminals at the port of Nagoya handled 2.68m TEUs in 2022. It is one of Japan’s largest clusters of container terminals and plays a key role in manufacturing export operations in Japan. It is particularly important to the automotive sector. The press agency Reuters reported that Toyota had issued a statement in Japan that it would “suspend operations at a packaging line for export-bound components”. This seems to relate to ‘Complete Knock-Down’ operations at its facility near the port of Nagoya . However, it also appears that the handling of finished vehicles at the port had been unaffected. Components for car assembly are overwhelmingly sourced within Japan and therefore the impact on car production is likely to be minimal.

Source: Ti Insights

Author: Thomas Cullen

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