CyberHelm: Pre-emptive Cyber Threat Protection for the Maritime Industry

Protecting Your Digital Ship

Late last year, Cybeta, a US-headquartered cybersecurity firm, entered into the maritime market with its new cyber protection solution, CyberHelm. Following the success of its original Cybeta solution built by US intelligence-trained experts, the company made the decision to roll out its solution to maritime to help protect vulnerable maritime assets.

CyberHelm, the maritime version of the company’s current technology Cybeta, predicts the risk of cyber-attack on companies’ technology assets. It incorporates ship-based operational technologies (OT), such as navigation, ballast, cargo systems, and more in its service, continuously scanning for both known and developing threats and vulnerabilities, and prioritizing their severity so users avoid alert fatigue.

“Operational technologies on ships have sort of been left to the side when it comes to cyber protection,” said Mr. Fredrik Munck, business development executive at Cybeta, during a presentation given at Digital Ship’s forum in Bergen on November 27, 2019. He believes that the industry needs to pay more attention to the risk that cyber hackers pose to maritime assets. “There are so many CVEs (Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures) being issued and it’s overwhelming. You have to work out which ones are relevant for you, but for some companies, it’s just too much to handle.”

Mr. Munck says that 80 percent of 125 maritime executives surveyed have admitted to having a security breach or cyber-attack, referring to an insurance report published last year. The problem he sees is that “there are so many hidden attacks in maritime.”

There is a significant amount of undiscovered dark web activity with new hacks being developed every day. Ships are at an increasing risk as, “these deep and dark hacking forums are constantly talking about the ‘sexiness of getting into a ship. ”The dark web is complex and divided into many different segments, meaning that even with the right password, finding out where the attack has come from is near impossible.

Cybeta’s CyberHelm solution incorporates a patent pending algorithm named Threat Beta, which scans public sources as well as the ‘deep and dark web’ and quantifies the relative likelihood of a cyber-attack on an enterprise and its individual technologies. Developed over the last 6 years, Threat Beta shows how severe a company’s threat is and how vulnerable its assets are compared with others. The algorithm, the idea of which was adapted from the financial sector, provides a relative score based on each technology. “If you have a score of more than 1 you are at a higher risk and an easier target. A score of more than 1 indicates a vulnerability that you should immediately look at. Less than
1 is not so critical,” he explained.

The algorithm has been independently tested by Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management who found that the service accurately predicts the likelihood of a cyber-attack up to 12 months in advance. The service also recommends specific remediation efforts and monitors the time-to-patch for identified vulnerabilities.

While there is, “no silver bullet that can solve all your issues as one supplier cannot give you one solution to keep you safe,” CyberHelm gives an over-the-horizon view of your vulnerabilities. “We want your technologies to be ahead of it, to tell you something is happening in the dark web so we can warn you of the specific technologies that are at risk.”

Here is a link to the article on Digital Ship.


Founded in 2019, Cybeta™, a Liberty Advisor Group company, offers a suite of Cybersecurity products and services designed to help you keep your business off the Cyber ‘X’. Based on decades of detecting and thwarting the activities of even the most advanced attackers, Cybeta delivers the substantive intelligence you need to make preemptive strategic and operational decisions. Think in terms of over-the-horizon visibility coupled with enhanced peripheral vision.