Terrorism is a global security challenge with threats to aviation from air cargo which is vulnerable to potential terrorist actions such as placing explosives aboard aircraft, as in the case when two explosive packages were discovered in an ink cartridge on an aircraft bound for the United States from Yemen.
In 2007, Congress passed the “Implementing Recommendations of the 9/11 Commission Act,” more commonly known as the 9/11 Act. This law requires that all cargo transported on passenger aircraft be screened for explosives, as of August 1, 2010. US law requires that every piece of cargo carried on a passenger aircraft in and out of the US is screened in a prescribed way. The same screening is used for air cargo as for passenger luggage.
Two approaches are currently being used for air cargo screening in the United States – a risk based approach and a one-size-fits-all method.
Homeland Security Today asked Doug Brittin, Secretary-General of the International Cargo Association (TIACA) to explain why a risk-based approach to cargo screening is preferable to the one-size-fits all method. “A risk based approach takes into account a wide range of measures that can be applied from the supply chain security perspective” he said. “Analysis of the shipper or supply chain for a number of other issues, as opposed to some of the more prescriptive approaches such as 100% screening which would be classified as the one-size-fits-all approach."
Read the complete report in the April/May 2015 Homeland Security Today.