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Piracy and Security News

Asia piracy incidents hit 5-year high in 2020, shipping insurance rates firm

Sea robbery and piracy related incidents across Asia increased 17% year on year to just under 100 in 2020, amid consistent threat of possible attacks by the Abu Sayyaf Group, or ASG, prompting warnings for enhanced vigilance, an international watchdog monitoring the trend said over the weekend Jan 16-17. Overall, such incidents in Asia, excluding the attempted ones, were up 32% from 2019 to a five-year high in 2020, ReCAAP said. ReCAAP is the Regional Cooperation Agreement on Combating Piracy and Armed Robbery against Ships in Asia. ReCAAP’s annual data ...

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Stop Talking, Start Doing: Helping the shipping community with free cyber security tools

IMO 2021 has arrived. The shipping community have been anticipating this for a while now. The fleet operators that wanted to get ahead of the deadline have been rushing to fulfil at least the minimum perceived requirements to comply. Some of them are getting it right – designing and properly implementing security controls that actually reduce the cyber risks of the shipboard systems. Others have taken a more confused approach, with the worst involving just superficial paperwork – compliance, not actual security. This should not be a surprise. There has ...

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Proactive vs. reactive cyber security strategies in maritime

In September 2020, CMA CGM, the world’s fourth-largest container shipping company, announced that it had experienced a cyber breach. Initially stating that its systems security hadn’t been compromised, a few days later, it had to declare that it was working on a plan to get access back to its systems. A few years ago, this kind of news would have been unheard of, however organisations publicly declaring that they have suffered a cyber breach is becoming almost an everyday occurrence. Due to the openness and interconnected nature of the Internet, ...

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Maritime Security: Updated Guidance For Vessels Operating In The Arabian Gulf, Gulf Of Oman, Gulf Of Aden And Red Sea

Reference is made to the recently reported event of a limpet mine having been found attached to the hull of a tanker engaged in a ship-to-ship transfer operation in the Arabian Gulf. Thankfully, the mine was discovered in time to avoid any injuries or damage to the vessel. As a result of this incident, a joint industry group has released further maritime security related guidance, Industry Update Following Incident in the Persian Gulf, recommending that vessel operators should consider sending the following guidance to vessels operating in the Arabian Gulf, ...

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Piracy increase – caution for owners

A rare attack off the coast of South America has highlighted the global risks from piracy now being faced by vessels. Although the number of attacks of piracy at sea have decreased in 2020, when compared to 2019, the spread of attacks has increased. Half of all attacks occurred in Nigeria, a fall from 71% in 2019 showing that pirates are travelling further afield to target vessels. Western crew members are particularly at risk of kidnap, with crew being taken ashore and ransom demanded. Taking into account the wide area ...

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UKMTO Weekly Piracy Report 10 Jan – 16 Jan 2021

Warnings, advisories and piracy incidents in the Indian Ocean Area by the UKMTO in the past week.

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Ninety-seven Incidents Reported to ReCAAP Information Sharing Centre in Asia in 2020, Marking 17% Year-on-Year Increase in Total Incidents and 32% Increase in Actual Incidents

ReCAAP Information Sharing Centre (ISC) today released its Annual Report 2020. Highlights of the report are: Overall Summary § There was a total of 97 incidents of piracy and armed robbery reported in Asia in 2020, comprising 95 actual incidents and 2 attempted incidents. § This represents an increase of 17% in the total number of incidents and a 32% increase in actual incidents, compared to 2019. § The increase of incidents occurred in Bangladesh, India, the Philippines, Vietnam, South China Sea and Singapore Strait. § Of the 97 incidents, ...

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Gulf of Guinea records highest ever number of crew kidnapped in 2020, according to IMB’s annual piracy report

The International Chamber of Commerce’s International Maritime Bureau (IMB)’s annual piracy report recorded an increase of piracy and armed robbery incidents in 2020. In 2020, IMB’s Piracy Reporting Centre (PRC) received 195 incidents of piracy and armed robbery against ships worldwide, in comparison to 162 in 2019. The incidents included three hijacked vessels, 11 vessels fired upon, 20 attempted attacks, and 161 vessels boarded. The rise is attributed to an increase of piracy and armed robbery reported within the Gulf of Guinea as well as increased armed robbery activity in ...

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Iran’s strategy of state piracy menaces Middle East oil lanes

Iran dialed up tensions in the Gulf this week when its troops stormed a South Korean-flagged tanker as it transited through the strategic Strait of Hormuz — a choke point through which a fifth of world oil output passes. The incident is only the latest in a long line of Iranian acts of “state piracy” in the flashpoint region. The MT Hankuk Chemi was en route from Saudi Arabia’s Jubail to the UAE’s Fujairah on Monday when members of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) navy boarded the vessel and ...

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UKMTO Weekly Piracy Report 03 Jan – 09 Jan 2021

Warnings, advisories and piracy incidents in the Indian Ocean Area by the UKMTO in the past week.

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West Africa dominates piracy in 2020 – Report

At the backdrop of efforts of the Nigerian government in collaboration with governments of countries in the West Africa sub-region to stem piracy on the Gulf of Guinea, GoG, the Cyprus Shipping Chamber, CSC, has indicated that the region still remains the world’s hotbed of the maritime crime. In its latest position released, yesterday, the CSC, a leading global shipping authority, said about 95 percent of global incidences in 2020 occurred within the GoG. This assessment is, however, coming ahead of the International Maritime Bureau, IMB, report on piracy sponsored ...

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Merchant vessel enters Iranian waters after interaction – UKMTO

The United Kingdom Maritime Trade Operations (UKMTO) naval authority said on Monday an “interaction” between Iranian authorities and a merchant vessel in the Strait of Hormuz led the ship to alter its course and proceed into Iranian waters. The UKMTO website gave no further details. Saudi-owned Al Arabiya TV cited unnamed sources as saying a South Korean-flagged tanker carrying chemicals had been seized by Iran. Source: Reuters (Reporting by Yousef Saba; Writing by Ghaida Ghantous; Editing by Jan Harvey)

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Ongoing Incident – Vessel Detained – Strait of Hormuz

Reporting indicates that the South Korean flagged Chemical Tanker HANKUK CHEMI (IMO:9232369) has likely been detained by Iranian forces in the Straits of Hormuz while inbound to Fujairah. Incident Overview Reporting indicates that the South Korean flagged Chemical Tanker HANKUK CHEMI (IMO9232369) has diverted her course northwards into Iranian Territorial Waters (ITW) while inbound to Fujairah from Al Jubail. Unconfirmed reporting indicates that the vessel has been detained by Iranian forces. The vessel has a crew of 23 comprising of Indonesian and Burmese nationals. The Fars News Agency, a media ...

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South Korean-flagged tanker seized by Iran, Seoul demands release

Iran’s Revolutionary Guards Corps seized a South Korean-flagged tanker in Gulf waters and detained its crew, Iranian media said on Monday, amid tensions between Tehran and Seoul over Iranian funds frozen in South Korean banks due to U.S. sanctions. Seoul confirmed the seizure of a South Korean chemical tanker by Iranian authorities in the waters off Oman, and demanded its immediate release. Several Iranian media outlets, including state TV, said the Guards navy captured the vessel for polluting the Gulf with chemicals. “According to initial reports by local officials, it ...

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Cyprus Shipping Chamber says ‘enough is enough’ with piracy in Gulf of Guinea

The Cyprus Shipping Chamber (CSC) expressed regret and frustration over the ineffectiveness of the international community to address the continuing piracy crisis in the Gulf of Guinea (GoG). Back in June 2020 the CSC said it raised grave concerns about the worsening piracy situation in the GoG and invited action by governments. “Unfortunately, the CSC is sad to observe that we have now reached the end of 2020 and despite the efforts being made by the industry, the situation remains gravely dangerous for ships trading in the GoG,” the chamber ...

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