Are the modern-day pirate attacks near Indonesia similar to those near Somalia and the Horn of Africa?

In some ways, Somali piracy and Indonesian piracy are very similar—and, in other ways, piracy in the two areas is very different. Here’s a quick breakdown:

  • Similarities: In both areas, pirates are generally violent and armed with modern weapons. They may be controlled by large criminal or political organizations or acting independently. Pirates in both areas may use teams of organized smaller craft to overtake larger vessels. It is common for pirates to take hostages and cargo, and piracy in both the areas around Indonesia and the areas around Somalia often takes advantage of local economic and political issues. And, in both areas, enforcement efforts have had a localized effect, but pirates continue to shift and operate from under-enforced areas.
  • Differences: While Somalia has a clear coast that aids in anti-piracy enforcement, the areas around Indonesia are composed of small swamps, inlets, and chains of islands—making enforcement and pursuit more difficult. Additionally, it is usually more difficult for vessels to plan alternate routes around the Strait of Malacca, compared to the Gulf of Aden near Somalia.


Unfortunately, something that pirate attacks in both areas share is the effect on crews, who may be injured, killed, robbed, or taken hostage in the course of the attack. If you are a member of a crew that was attacked by pirates—no matter where in the world—speak with our experienced legal team today. We have direct experience working with crewmembers after pirate attacks, and we would be happy to put our experience to work for you. Reach out to us today at 877-724-7800.

Brian Beckcom
Highest Possible 10/10 AVVO ranking. Husband. Father. Fisherman.