Recently, I had to provide someone with a list of the top ten CTPAT Minimum Security Criteria that I thought were the most critical. This was not an easy exercise. As any importer who is a CTPAT member knows, there are 140 different criteria, and each one is important, especially the required ones.
If you asked ten CTPAT experts to compose such a list, you would likely end up with ten different lists. To make prioritizing easier, we’ve created our own top ten list for your reference.
All 140 security criteria are important, but these are the criteria on which we’ve seen Customs Supply Chain Security Specialists focus their attention on, as well as demand detailed, documented procedures. The list is a good representation of a solid security program from beginning to end.
Conduct an overall risk assessment. At the heart of the CTPAT program is the regular practice of identifying and mitigating risks throughout your supply chain.
Written processes for new and current partners. CTPAT members must vet their business partners to ensure they are legitimate and meet or exceed CTPAT Minimum Security Criteria.
Comprehensive written cybersecurity policies. Frequently, I hear Customs Supply Chain Security Specialist talk about the importance of robust cybersecurity measures, particularly as we see cybersecurity events becoming more and more common.
All conveyances must undergo CTPAT-approved security and agriculture inspections. Systematic inspections of conveyances play a key role in preventing contraband and invasive species from crossing borders.
Procedures to ensure that information is legible, complete, accurate, and protected. Are there checks and balances to make certain that your documents are accurate?
Visitors must present photo ID and sign a visitor log. Do you have security measures in place to control access to your facilities?
Procedures regarding unauthorized/unidentified personnel. CTPAT members must have measures to identify who is in your facilities and train personnel on procedures for handling unauthorized/unidentified persons.
Written processes for screening personnel and verifying application information. CTPAT members must take due diligence to vet their personnel to reduce the chance of internal conspiracies.
Written procedures for reporting an incident. CTPAT is a partnership, so members need to be committed and prepared to communicate with law enforcement regarding suspicious behavior or security incidents.
Establish a security training and awareness program. CTPAT members must give their personnel the knowledge, tools, and awareness to keep their supply chain secure.
Since CTPAT was introduced 20 years ago, Tradewin has helped hundreds of companies apply for and get into the program, as well as get ready for their annual updated requirements, prepare for validation visits, and educate their foreign suppliers about their role in supply chain security. Please feel free to contact us so we may assist you in your CTPAT efforts.