How can cadets of the future deal with cyber security and personal data management?

Cyber security is an issue that businesses and organisations of all sizes and across all industries need to take seriously. When systems and networks are unsecured or software requires updating and is easy prey for the latest viruses, both company and personal data are wide open to hacks and theft. And even if the IT team responsible for ensuring the safety of a shipping company’s network has done their job, if they aren’t keeping you up to speed with practices, you may still be at risk.

Is the maritime industry out of date?

Traditionally shipping companies have been slow adopters of the latest technologies with ‘cloud’ being used more often than not in conjunction with the weather forecast than a secure online storage system! But as a future cadet, your generation will be instrumental in helping to effect crucial changes within the industry, helping to make seafaring safer in terms of cyber security.

Dealing with cyber security

On a personal level, common sense is everything when it comes to keeping yourself, and the company you work for, safe online. Are you guilty of using the same passwords to access all your accounts? Are those passwords overly simple and easy to crack? (You'd be surprised how many people use "123456" or "password" to log in!) Is the software you use updated and running on the latest version? Are you 110% sure that the links you click on or documents you open in emails are from who they say they are?

How to manage personal data

The best way of ensuring you're secure when you're online, both on dry land and at sea, is to be using programs and software that is encrypted, secure and developed by a trustworthy source. For shipping companies that are using best practices, this means ensuring that all personal data is stored using an advanced software solution and that all employees are trained and up-to-date with processes and systems.