Safety related cyber-attacks identification and assessment for autonomous inland ships

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Recent advances in the maritime industry include the research and development of new sophisticated ships including the autonomous ships. The new autonomy concept though comes at the cost of additional complexity introduced by the number of systems that need to be installed on-board and on-shore, the software intensiveness of the complete system, the involved interactions between the systems, components and humans and the increased connectivity. All the above results in the increased system vulnerability to cyber-attacks, which may lead to unavailability or hazardous behaviour of the critical ship systems. The aim of this study is the identification of the safety related cyber-attacks to the navigation and propulsion systems of an inland autonomous ship as well as the safety enhancement of the ship systems design. For this purpose, the Cyber Preliminary Hazard Analysis method is employed supported by the literature review of the system vulnerabilities and potential cyber-attacks. The Formal Safety Assessment risk matrix is employed for ranking of the hazardous scenarios. The results demonstrate that a number of critical scenarios can arise on the investigated autonomous vessel due to the known vulnerabilities. These can be sufficiently controlled by introducing appropriate modifications of the system design.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages15
Publication statusPublished - 17 Sep 2019
EventInternational Seminar on Safety and Security of Autonomous Vessels (ISSAV) - Aalto University, Helsinki, Finland
Duration: 17 Sep 201920 Sep 2019


ConferenceInternational Seminar on Safety and Security of Autonomous Vessels (ISSAV)


  • safety
  • cybersecurity
  • autonomous inland vessel
  • navigation and propulsion systems
  • Cyber Preliminary Hazard Analysis


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