Shell Re-Routes Oil Supplies To Other Depots After A Cyberattack On Marquard & Bahls

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Shell Re-Routes Oil Supplies To Other Depots After A Cyberattack On Marquard & Bahls

Wed, 02/02/2022 - 11:00
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Hacker trying to breach a security system (© Shutterstock/Pira25)
Hacker trying to breach a security system (© Shutterstock/Pira25)

Shell, one of the world's leading oil suppliers, announced on Tuesday, February 1, it was re-routing its supplies following the January 29 cyberattack on two German subsidiary firms, Marquard & Bahls.

Based on the two companies' joint statement, the mineral oil dealer Mabanaft GmbH & Co. KG Group and Oiltanking GmbH Group discovered on Saturday that their IT systems were under cyber attack that disrupted the supply chain.

The Shell Deutschland GmbH, Germany's major oil subsidiary, re-routed the oil supplies to alternative supply depots at the moment. Oiltanking and Mabanaft said they are working to resolve the problem as soon as they understand its scope.

"We are undertaking a thorough investigation, together with external specialists, and are collaborating closely with the relevant authorities. All terminals continue to operate safely," the statement read.

The attack on Germany's oil subsidiary comes nearly a year after the US-based Colonial Cyber attack that drifted the entire supply chain to a halt in 2021.

Oiltanking Deutschland GmbH & Co. KG terminals are a unit of Mabanaft, are currently operating under limited capacity, and have declared force majeure just like Mabanaft Deutschland GmbH & Co. KG for the majority of domestic supply in Germany, the statement added.

BP Plc's spokesperson said that the latest disturbance forced Aral, Germany's largest petrol station supply up to about 2,300 stations, to supply its stations from alternative sources. BP Plc is the pipeline company's parent company.

"The supply of Aral is currently secure despite the loading halt at Oiltanking," said the spokesperson.

The Hamburg-based subsidiary, Marquard & Bahls, generated $11.8 billion in 2020 alone and employed about 6200 people, with its Oiltanking owning and operating 45 terminals across Germany. In the face of the latest attack, Germany's cybersecurity experts assured their involvement in getting the crisis over.

"I consider this incident to be serious, but not grave," president of the Federal Office for Information Security, Arne Schonbohm, said in a press conference. However, the nature of the cyberattack on Marquard & Bahls remains unclear.

"The companies produce 1.6 million litres of fuel oil and 2.1 million litres of fuel per year... It affects 233 fuel stations in northern Germany. It is probably possibly to pay in cash," he added.

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