MSC Data Center Closes Following Suspected Cyber-Attack

A container shipping company has said malware could be to blame for the closure of one of its data centers last week.

The Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC) took to Twitter on Good Friday to report a network outage issue affecting the website msc.com, which was still down at time of writing. 

The incident, which is thought to have occurred on Thursday, April 9, also brought down the shipping company’s myMSC portal. 

A message posted from the Twitter account MSC Cargo on April 10 stated: “We are sorry to inform you that http://MSC.com and myMSC are currently not available as we’ve experienced a network outage in one of our data centers. We are working on fixing the issue.”

As a result of the outage, self-service tools for making and managing bookings on MSC ships have ceased to be operational. Alternative booking platforms are available, and customers can still book via email and over the phone.

“All our departments, terminals and depots are operating without disruptions,” said MSC. “Customers can still book via INTTRA and GT Nexus, which are both fully functional, or place bookings via email.”

While an investigation into what caused the data network outage is ongoing, MSC said that there was a chance that a cyber-attack could be at the root of the problem. 

In a message posted on Twitter on April 10, MSC said: “At this point in time we cannot rule out entirely the possibility of malware, but we can confirm that our agencies worldwide network is working. And that our local agents support customers for all services as usual.”

Following the incident, the container shipping company has closed down its servers at its headquarters in the Swiss city of Geneva. MSC said that the incident had only affected internal data processes and that the servers had been closed for security reasons. 

In a tweet shared on April 12, MSC appeared confident that a fix was just around the corner, writing, “Significant progress has been made to solve the network outage, and we are confident the issue will be solved shortly. We will continue to issue regular updates.”

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