Since Thursday, July 22, the computer system of the state-owned company Transnet, which manages all ports in South Africa, has been inaccessible, as has its official website.
as reported from Johannesburg, Romain Song
The company Transnet and the South African government have so far neither indicated any leads to the origin of the attack nor mentioned a solution. To limit the damage, container handling is now done manually. Fresh and perishable products are a priority because the citrus season is in full swing.
For Durban, the continent’s third largest container port, this cyber attack already has serious consequences. “For us, it’s catastrophic,” concludes the director of a large logistics company. Due to the delays, hundreds of its containers, copper and cobalt have already missed the ship that would export them.
Taking over operations manually is not enough. “With the volume passing through the port, it is chaotic,” said the same source. The attacked computer system made it possible to track a container, assign a place to it to avoid spending the day looking for it in this maze.
This computer attack, more the riots two weeks ago, will “leave tracks for the whole year”, fears this boss. Its warehouses were closed for a week during the looting and riots that followed the arrest of former President Jacob Zuma. Events qualified as “economic sabotage” by the government.
However, this cyber attack is not linked to the riots, the government still explains. Blocks the port of Durban was one of the targets for Jacob Zuma’s supporters. This is their wish.