STRAITSECURITY investigates policy and legal challenges in the maritime sector posed by the rapid spread of technology and growing threats to cybersecurity. The project will focus on some of the world’s busiest commercial shipping lanes as case studies (the Straits of Singapore and Malacca, the Sunda Strait and the Lombok Strait – all of which are partially or wholly within the jurisdiction of the Republic of Indonesia). These shipping lanes are of vital importance to European trade to Asia and a blockage would affect all corners of the globe. The rise of autonomous vehicles, artificial intelligence, robotics and the internet of things raises a number of vulnerabilities and challenges to maritime security. The anonymous, borderless nature of cyberspace presents unique opportunities for hackers, terrorists and cybercriminals, as well as unprecedented challenges for policy makers and law enforcers. The burgeoning and ubiquitous reliance on technology, coupled with continued piratical and terrorist activity in the region, poses a severe security risk to shipping. In recent years, the concept of cyber-terrorism has gained widespread awareness. This multidisciplinary, original and innovative research aims to significantly advance our theoretical and empirical understanding of the intersections between physical and cyber threats to the maritime domain, by considering the real possibility of hybrid threats to maritime security, such as ‘cyber-piracy’ and ‘cyber-terrorism’. It also aims to address a number of conceptual problems that these raise and the respective implications in maritime security policy for the international community in general and the EU in particular. The research will deploy mixed qualitative and quantitative research methods and collect primary data by consulting with experts in law, policy, technology, maritime security and cyber security in the UK and SE Asia (Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore) to inform its conclusions and recommendations.
Fields of science
Call for proposal
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