Insiders have said that Cyber Coordinator Mike Daniel will drop Supply Chain Security from his pending revision of the Obama cybersecurity policy. Dropping one of the most crucial aspects of cyber as a point of focus would be unfortunate. Active supply chain security for cyberspace is absolutely required if we are to get ahead – and stay ahead – of the numerous threats we face.
In the logistics business, there is little tolerance for uncertainty. The supply chain, from the producer to the consumer, must be finely tuned so goods arrive at the right destination within tight time frames. TSA rules, particularly security procedures for processing cargo transported by air, can dramatically affect supply chain performance. Yet, there are no TSA enforcement guidelines detailing the agency’s discretion in enforcing noncompliance with air cargo security rules.
In 2007, Congress passed a mandate to screen all cargo on passenger planes. It was an enormous demand of industry and the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), one that shows a clear lack of understanding for real-world issues like business models and a functioning supply chain. Five years later, TSA and industry are still working to meet an unrealistic mandate. Put bluntly, 100 percent screening was a stupid idea that has not made America more secure.
Despite Defense Department budget cuts and ongoing military operations, pirates in the waters off the coast of Somalia won’t see a decrease in naval military presence any time soon. NATO allies recently agreed to continue through 2014 the Ocean Shield operation – a counter-piracy naval operation off the Horn of Africa protecting merchant ships from pirate attack. This is welcome news to many ship owners and charters, which have seen an increase in the number of pirate attacks in the Indian Ocean. The pirate threat and the international response seem only to be escalating.
Last week, U.S. Attorney Joe Hogsett announced a $1 million fine against OHL Solutions for intentionally failing to screen cargo in accordance with TSA rules. The TSA investigation began in December 2010, and this fine was not a shock to many observers – even before that investigation began, several of us noted that serious TSA enforcement actions seemed just around the corner. But this enforcement action does give rise to a problem – since TSA security plans are so complex and unwieldy, how is it possible to comply with the letter of the law?
By Michael Balboni
In an op-ed for Newsday, I examined Secretary Napolitano’s announcement of a National Strategy for Supply Chain Security, noting that it only mentioned the importance of physical security. Surprisingly, cyber threats were left completely off the table, though it is crucial to recognize that both these threats are actually inexorably intertwined.
By Seth Stodder
This week, the Obama Administration released its long-awaited National Strategy for Global Supply Chain Security. The strategy articulates the Administration’s vision for working with the international partners and the global private sector to both promote the efficient and secure movement of goods throughout the global economy, and also foster the development of a supply chain system more resilient to major disruptions.
Recently, it was reported that members of Mexican Crime Cartels illegally entered five different truck yards in northern Mexico by threatening security officers. These criminals did not steal cash or cargo. Instead, they compromised sensitive corporate information – routing information for U.S.-bound commercial truck shipments. Criminal organizations the world over, especially along the land border of Mexico and the United States, use commercial trucks to move contraband. Because of the huge amount of trade that crosses our borders and the limited number of personnel to inspect and process this trade, two methods were created to ease the cargo delays and help the CBP inspectors target suspect trucks.
The TSA and the aviation industry acknowledge the unrealistic goal of screening 100 percent of all air cargo that enters, crosses or leaves the country. Some members of Congress, never to miss an oversimplified political solution to a complex problems, call for even more screening than we already (don’t) have.
US Congress Proposes Voluntary Air Cargo Screening – Food Logistics The US Senate Subcommittee on Transportation Security has proposed a new Transportation The proposed air cargo advanced screening (ACAS) program encourages cargo carriers to provide shipment level data for air cargo bound for the US, enabling the TSA to target and inspect high-risk cargo at […]