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June 30, 2017 12:45 PM, EDT
Cargo Delivery at PortMiami Terminal Paralyzed After Cyber Attack
Harshil Shah/Flickr

Some dry cargo delivery at PortMiami has come to a halt this week after a cyber attack hit a company that operates in one of the terminals.

The South Florida Container Terminal’s website said June 27 that its IT systems had been taken down and that it was closed to processing trucks, though it did not specify the cause.

The terminal is a partner of APM Terminals, a subsidiary of A.P. Moller-Maersk. Maersk was hit by a global cyber attack that hacked 17 shipping container terminals run by APM Terminals, Reuters reported June 27.

APM Terminals did not name the affected terminals in a statement but said those terminals had “implemented business continuity plans.” The group operates nearly 200 port and inland facilities in 61 countries, according to its website.

The South Florida Container Terminal’s website said the terminal would be open June 29 only to pick up live reefer containers from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., and that dry cargo would still not be delivered nor any containers received. The website did not specify when the terminal might return to normal operations.

“We continue to assess the situation,” the terminal’s website reported. “The safety of your business and our people is our top priority.”

The cyber attack, which affected computer systems in several countries including the United States, hit several other companies, including the drug company Merck and even a factory run by the confectionery company Cadbury, according to the New York Times.

Companies that expected to receive shipments from the South Florida Container Terminal have been unable to pick them up, said Jerry Duitz, who runs a uniform clothing company based in New York that was expecting a container June 28.

Duitz said a container that carried about 60,000 pieces for his company, JDM Uniforms Ltd., from a manufacturing factory in Shanghai was still stuck on a vessel. He said that truckers he had hired to pick them up were unable to get in touch with the port.

The drivers contacted the shipping company, which told them that they were unable to unload any containers from the vessel, Duitz said.

“It presents a lot of problems,” he added, saying that the retailers who sell his company’s scrubs are stuck. “We can’t deliver. They can’t sell it.”

As of the afternoon of June 29, Duitz said he had still been unable to make contact with terminal employees and that their phones were not accepting calls.

The terminal director did not respond to calls for comment the afternoon of June 29.