What we can learn from SA’s biggest port being hacked

August 6th, 2021
What we can learn from SA’s biggest port being hacked


Transnet was forced to declare force majeure in late July after experiencing a cyber-attack. As South Africa’s largest port operator, the state-owned freight enterprise was forced to bring operations to a grinding halt at container terminals in Durban, Ngqura, Port Elizabeth and Cape Town and send many of its employees home while it grappled with the security invasion.

The Durban port alone handles 60% of the nation’s shipments, including freight for other African countries, including landlocked nations such as the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

While Transnet continued to operate, the container terminals were functioning far slower than usual. A manual container-moving system had to be implemented (which was part of its business continuity plans).

Risk to Business: 1.919 = Severe

The disruption has had ripple effects through international supply chains as materials and freight handled by Transnet have been delayed.

This reinforces our belief at Numata Business IT that any business of any size and operating model can be vulnerable to cyber threats. “We believe that enlisting your employees in the fight against cybercrime is the best way to protect your organisation from cyber threats,” says our Cybersecurity Product Manager, Liza Weschta. “The aim is to prevent an attack before it happens and then to have a plan in place if there is a security incident.”

Liza says encouraging a participatory security culture makes everyone feel like part of the IT team. This means implementing regular and thorough cybersecurity awareness training. Then it’s also important to develop an incident response plan for if and when things do go wrong.

Numata Business IT can help your business to combat advanced cybersecurity attacks. Get in touch today to find out more.

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