Police investigate ‘cyber incident’ at Australia ports operator


SYDNEY (Reuters) -Australian police were on Sunday investigating a cybersecurity incident that forced ports operator DP World Australia to suspend operations at ports in several states from Friday.

“We’ve commenced an investigation into the incident and we’re not commenting further as it’s an ongoing investigation,” said a spokesperson for the Australian Federal Police.

DP World Australia, part of Dubai’s state-owned ports giant DP World, suspended operations at its container terminals in Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane and Western Australia’s Fremantle after detecting the breach on Friday.

In a statement on Sunday, DP World Australia said it was “testing key systems crucial for the resumption of normal operations and regular freight movement”.

It was also examining “the nature of data access and data theft”, it said.

A company spokesperson did not immediately respond to a Reuters request for comment on when normal operations would resume.

The ports operator said earlier it was “working around the clock” to restore normal operations.

Late on Saturday, the National Cyber Security Coordinator Darren Goldie, appointed this year in response to several major data breaches, said the “interruption” was “likely to continue for a number of days and will impact the movement of goods into and out of the country”.

“DP World Australia has advised it has restricted access to its Australian port operations in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Fremantle while it investigates the incident,” Goldie said on social media platform X, formerly known as Twitter.

Home Affairs Minister Clare O’Neil said on Saturday that the government was coordinating a response to the “cyber incident”.

According to DP World, in the Asia-Pacific region it employs more than 7,000 people and has ports and terminals in 18 locations.

(Reporting by Sam McKeith in Sydney; Editing by David Gregorio, Robert Birsel)

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