Seaports Magazine - Winter 2013 - (Page 8)

»PRESIDENT'S MESSAGE The Human Aspect of Security By Kurt Nagle President & CEO American Association of Port Authorities P   orts have many assets in their equipment and infrastructure, ranging from roads and rail connections to ship-to-shore cranes and yard equipment. These assets are invaluable to the movement of goods and people, and they can be neatly summed up on a balance sheet and compiled in marketing materials when ports are courting new business. But ports also know that some of their most important resources lie in human capital - the diligent employees who come to work at the port every day and the many partners that ports have in meeting their goals and objectives. This emphasis on people is never more relevant than with security. While port security immediately following 9/11 focused on acquiring and installing muchneeded new equipment and systems, as ports purchased cameras, sensors and fences and built command centers, there has been a shift in recent years to focus on the human aspects of security. Ports increasingly have been seeking opportunities to provide training for their personnel, and as ports - like other pieces of critical infrastructure - are confronting the challenge of cybersecurity, they are rightly focusing on the practices of their employees as much as the hardware and software they use. The U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has estimated that 91 percent of cyber attacks begin by "one bad click" in response to a phishing campaign. Ports are not immune from these attacks, and every work station and system on a port's network is a possible entryway for hackers and cyber malcontents. 8 AAPA SEAPORTS MAGAZINE Luckily, ports do not have to face security threats on their own. They have partners - in federal and local law enforcement, including the U.S. Coast Guard, and in many of the technology providers and strategic consultants who work with ports. The "human firewall" will play a critical role in protecting ports from cyber attacks, and - perhaps as important - it will be port employees and their partners who respond to any attack that happens. Cybersecurity experts say that everyone is vulnerable to attack, and if a cyber attack hasn't yet hit your organization, it will. But preparing in advance to minimize the impact of such an attack and reacting intelligently after it happens are the best that even the most secure organizations can do. Luckily, ports do not have to face security threats on their own. They have partners - in federal and local law enforcement, including the U.S. Coast Guard, and in many of the technology providers and strategic consultants who work with ports. These partnerships will be critical to confronting cyber threats, but they remain important in addressing physical threats as well. Ports remain diligent in securing their facilities to protect against terrorist attacks and bracing for potential security impacts of natural disasters. Some ports are developing mobile response centers to be able to better respond to situations as they develop, and others are finding innovative ways to link disparate data systems together. These improvements in maritime domain awareness systems allow port information technology and security staff to utilize their strengths to most efficiently and effectively use technology and first responders' talents in one cohesive effort. Cargo security, too, remains a top priority for the port industry. Several programs designed to increase the safety of cargo security, including the Cargo Security Initiative and the use of Centralized Examination Stations, are reaching maturity, and the United States is now able to take a big picture look at those programs to determine their strengths and weaknesses. This issue of Seaports magazine touches on all these topics. While the economic and trade downturn of the past several years has forced the port industry to heighten focus on cargo trends and bottom lines, security has remained a top priority. Ports are committed to playing a critical role in national security, both in the United States and throughout the Western Hemisphere. Fortunately for ports, so much of this work can be accomplished by focusing on human resources. Whether it's finding the right company to provide training for employees, partnering with a government agency to more efficiently screen cargo, connecting staff across business lines to work together in innovative ways or figuring out how to best utilize commercial technology, ports know that security comes down to people. ●

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Seaports Magazine - Winter 2013

AAPA Headquarters
From the President’s Desk
Securing Seaport Cyberspace
Ces Operators Work in Partnership With Port Communities
Radar Technology Opens Up for All Ports
Mccs Keep Ports Running in Case of Emergency
Seaport Industry Gathers in Central Florida for Aapa Annual Convention
Forging His Own Path
All States Depend on Maritime Trade Growth
Maritime Security: 10 Years of Partnerships
Cybersecurity a Growing Threat to Maritime Security
Port Metro Vancouver Announces Funding for Security Expansion
Jamaica-U.n. Sign Mou to Improve Port Security
Integrated Management System Addresses Security at Bahia Blanca
Coastal Trident Training Program Tests Hueneme’s Preparedness
Index of Advertisers

Seaports Magazine - Winter 2013