Ransomware Disables Transport, US Issues New Cybersecurity Rules

The United States (US) is taking new steps to ensure the air and land transportation sector cannot be crippled by ransomware and cyber attacks.

US Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas announced the move Tuesday at a virtual cybersecurity conference. He warned that recent incidents such as the Solar Winds hack and the ransomware attack on the Colonial Pipeline show “it’s not just how we communicate or how we work, but how we live.”

The new security policy targets what the Department of Homeland Security and the Transportation Security Administration describe as high-risk rail companies, key airport operators, and airline passenger and air cargo businesses.

Mayorkas said, going forward, the train company must appoint a cyber security coordinator who will report any incidents and develop contingency plans to deal with cyber attacks.

The airline will also be required to appoint a cybersecurity coordinator and report incidents to the Department of Homeland Security’s Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency.

Similar cybersecurity policies are already in place for some 2,300 major maritime companies. Starting this month the companies must submit plans to identify and respond to their cyber vulnerabilities. [jm/ka]

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