SecureLink and Juniper Networks roll out the Port of Antwerp’s innovative network
Wommelgem – SecureLink, the biggest cyber security and Managed Security Service provider of Europe, in collaboration with Juniper Networks, will replace the Port of Antwerp’s network.
The Port of Antwerp is increasingly profiling itself as an enabler of technological innovation in and around the port, taking the role of community builder between all partners. These partners’ main need is mobile connectivity to achieve operational excellence.
This need for connectivity was apparent from a recent survey conducted by the Port of Antwerp among its users. More specifically, this means investing in smart cameras and sensors in the short term (<1 year). In the medium term (<3 years), the port partners are expecting a lot from autonomous drones, robots, AR & VR and autonomous barges. Only then (+3 years), are they thinking about introducing autonomous trucks. The first autonomous vehicles in the port will probably be fork-lift vehicles.
Speed, security and bandwidth
Speed, security and bandwidth are the three principal criteria to make a network ready for this innovation. These criteria were also included in the tender that was launched.
“Security is a very important aspect in the port. Sometimes we have to communicate quickly or have visual confirmation. Hence our choice for very high standards, such as a latency of maximum 150 milliseconds of delay for video images. But protection against cybercrime also plays a role in the choice of a secure network”, says Robert De Maere, IT Infrastructure Manager at the Port of Antwerp.
Importance of geographic and physical proximity
SecureLink, in partnership with Juniper Networks, won the contract in the end. Together they were able to offer management software that allows the Port of Antwerp to test the new innovative features in a secured and closed part of the network. A roll back button allowed everything to be turned back if necessary. This is not evident at network level under normal circumstances. They were only too happy to accept this option. The geographic and physical proximity of technical expertise and certified engineers were also a decisive factor in the decision to work with SecureLink.
“Our network has to be operational 24/7. Should anything happen, it is crucial that local experts are on site quickly to solve the problem,” says Robert De Maere. “And also, we have been working with SecureLink for some time and we are very happy with this partnership.”
The implementation and transition began in September and will be finalised before the end of the year. It concerns an investment of nearly 3 million euros.
Quote SecureLink: “The Port of Antwerp is a great example of a digital transition where considerable thought was given to the current and future needs of the port and the partners. It is also a project where security was not an afterthought, but was a priority from the start”, says Jo Vander Schueren, general manager of SecureLink Belgium, part of Orange Cyberdefense.
Quote Juniper Networks: “The port of the future is a smart port. To remain at the top as a world port, the Port of Antwerp is ready to take up the challenge with a completely new infrastructure full of smart technology,” James Morgan, VP Sales EMEA.
About Juniper Networks
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About the Port of Antwerp
The second biggest port of Europe, the Port of Antwerp is an important lifeline for the Belgian economy: more than 300 scheduled services to more than 800 destinations guarantee worldwide connectivity. The Port of Antwerp handles some 235 million tonnes of international maritime cargo annually and is home to the largest integrated chemical cluster in Europe. The Port of Antwerp, directly and indirectly, is good for a total of around 143,000 jobs and an added value of more than 20 billion euros.
Loyal to its mission ‘A Home port as a lever for a sustainable future’ the Antwerp Port Authority wants to provide a flexible answer to a rapidly evolving maritime market to allow the port to continue playing a leading role as an international port. The focus is on collaboration, our great adaptability, our strong focus on innovation and digitisation and on sustainable added value, as well as our responsibility towards society.
Antwerp Port Authority is a public corporation, with the city of Antwerp as its sole shareholder. It employs more than 1,500 people. Port alderman Annick De Ridder is chairman of the Board of Directors and Jacques Vandermeiren is CEO and chairman of the Executive committee, which is responsible for the day-to-day management. www.portofantwerp.com