INITIATIVE SEEKS TO PROVE POINT OF ORIGIN SECURITY STRATEGY
A group of transportation security specialists are out to prove that advanced electronic transmissions of shipment data from the point of origin is needed to facilitate trade flows in a secure environment.
“Operation Safe Commerce” (OSC) is an initiative that has involved shippers, transportation entities, and federal, state and local law enforcement agencies in sharing information about cargo from the point of origin through the supply chain to final destination.
'The program has already been tested with shipments between Rotterdam and a New Hampshire land border port. About two weeks ago, the operation was extended to shipments from Rotterdam to New York and New Jersey. Data from the OSC test helps to support cargo monitoring efforts of government agencies, such as Customs, Transportation Department, and the Office of Homeland Security.
John O’Brien, director of marketing for New York-based CargoSmart, told executives of the National Customs Brokers and Forwarders Association of America in Hollywood, Fla., the initiative would ensure security of shipments without impeding trade.
CargoSmart, which provides an Internet-based information portal for OSC, ensures the security of the shippers’ data. “Obviously, it is going to be very secure,” O’Brien said.
Peter Powell, outgoing NCBFAA president, agreed that electronic transmissions from the point of origin are a “common theme” among U.S. Customs and the shipping industry. Powell said the industry should take the lead on these types of initiatives. “We are going to have to be the major players,” he said.