Gefco has admitted that it came under an external cyberattack last Sunday, “designed to disrupt our business”.

Gefco said it did not yet know the origin of the attack, but is “working 24/7 with our IT partners and authorities to investigate and resolve the issue”.

In a letter to customers, partners and colleagues, chief executive and chairman Luc Nadal said that Gefco had informed customer and partners, and “mobilised our employees to identify and implement alternative processes to ensure business continuity.

“Our IT team, together with our IT partners are working 24 hours a day to restore our business apps and we have already made a lot of progress in finding backup solutions.”

But the company gave no information on what systems had been affected, with a spokesperson telling The Loadstar only that it is “impacting our operations” and that Gefco would “provide regular updates on this issue”.

Mr Nadal added that Gefco had “weathered many storms” in its 70-plus year history.

“We are a resilient and robust organisation with a strong ‘Partners, unlimited mindset.

“We have pushed back boundaries to find solutions for our customers throughout the years, and today we are grateful for your commitment to us.

“We will continue to do everything possible to preserve the integrity of our business and to serve you.

“We will keep you informed about our progress and thank you for your commitment to Gefco.”

Gefco is the latest in a line of logistics companies to be affected by cyber crime. As the industry digitises, experts have warned that it is becoming an increasingly high profile target for cyber criminals.

Following Toll Group’s second attack this year, in May, Lars Jensen, analyst, said he had  “the clear impression that the industry is still largely debating the same issues as they have been for the past five years, but actual progress towards heightening security standards are moving slowly”.

The NotPetya attack on Maersk was said to have cost the shipping line between $250m and $300m, while FedEx estimated its costs or the same attack at about $300m.

Analysis by security experts at Hornetsecurity found that about 14% of the companies at risk from malicious emails are part of the logistics industry.

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