Cyber attack on Asian ports could cost $110 billion: Lloyd’s of London

A report prepared by University of Cambridge Centre for Risk Studies, on behalf of the Cyber Risk Management (CyRiM) project, in partnership with Lloyd’s, a cyber insurer.

On Wednesday, a report backed by Lloyd’s of London stated, a cyber attack on Asian ports could cost a whopping $110 billion equivalent to half of the total global loss from natural catastrophes in 2018.

For Lloyd’s, a player in the cyber insurance business, Asia and Europe are a growth market with cyber insurance penetrations levels far behind those in the United States.

This worst case scenario was based on a simulated cyber attack disrupting 15 ports in China, Japan, Singapore, Malaysia, and South Korea where around $101 billion of the total estimated economic costs of such an attack are uninsured, said Lloyd’s.

The figure was calculated by simulating the impact of a computer virus carried by ships and which scrambles cargo database records at the ports.

The report was produced by the University of Cambridge Centre for Risk Studies, on behalf of the Cyber Risk Management (CyRiM) project, in partnership with Lloyd’s.

Asia is home to nine of the world’s 10 busiest ports and is a crucial part of the supply chains for the world’s leading companies in sectors from autos to industrial goods, clothing and electronics.

The report estimated that the world’s transport sector, including aerospace, would be hit the most, with economic losses totaling $28.2 billion. Manufacturing would take a $23.6 billion hit, while retail would face losses of $18.5 billion.

Countries linked to each port would also be affected.

Asian countries would be the most affected with $26 billion in indirect losses, followed by Europe with $623 million and North America with $266 million.

“We know that the biggest assets for companies are not physical, they are intangible,” said John Neal, Lloyd’s Chief Executive. “With the increasing application of technology and automation, these risks will become even more acute.”

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