The shipping industry is complex, especially to the outsider. No matter what element of shipping your work in, there are a lot of rules, regulations, and logistical elements to juggle, as well as a number of risks to manage. There are multiple risks that businesses can face when it comes to the shipment process. Understanding these risks and having plans in place to mitigate them can help to make the shipment process smoother, avoiding serious problems. What are the most pervasive problems in shipment security today? Take a look at some of the following risk factors and what you can do to avoid them.
The lasting impact of COVID-19
There’s no denying the impact that the COVID-19 pandemic has had on the shipping industry. With multiple closures of businesses, delays, and growing demand for certain supplies, it’s been a trying time for the industry.
To enable recovery, and to ensure supplies continue to be delivered to the right destination, procedures have changed and policies modified to make sure operations are carried out safely.
Even as the world continues to recover from the effects of the pandemic, the impact on shipping looks set to continue for some time.
Customs inspections and clearance issues
While only 2-10% of shipments are inspected at customs, you can be sure at some stage that it will happen to you – especially if you deal with a large volume of shipments. Dealing with customs inspections in itself is difficult, with each company having its own rules and regulations. Providing accurate information is important to ensure you avoid problems with importers and to build good relationships with officials.
There can be some serious consequences as a result of customs inspections and clearance, leaving you facing delays that can cost your business time and money. You don’t want to create security issues by failing to be prepared in advance.
Failure to produce Bill of Lading and other paperwork
It can be difficult to fathom that missing paperwork can lead to such big delays for shipping companies. But misplacing a Bill of Lading and other paperwork can put your shipping plans on hold. It’s worth investing in the right channels to ensure your paperwork is couriered safely and securely, ensuring your shipment can proceed as planned.
Shipping delays can have a significant impact on businesses. The blockage of the Suez Canal earlier in 2021 had a huge knock-on effect for businesses, holding up an estimated $9.6bn of trade for each day of the event.
Delays cost money, and you may need to consider the measures you’ll put in place to deal with these unexpected costs and how you’ll manage the situation with your partners. Delays pose big security risks, putting your cargo at risk of theft, damage, and more.
Cyberattacks are a relatively new risk for shipping security. The growing reliance on technology means companies put their businesses at risk of cyberattacks, which can cost a business a lot of money and its reputation.
Cyberattacks put customer and business data at risk, but this can be avoided with a robust security strategy. Your strategy should consider how and where your products are being shipped, where the potential threats are, and how you can mitigate them.
Fortunately, today’s technology provides solutions to help businesses become better protected from cyberattacks. Making the most of NFC tags can help you keep track of your shipments, ensuring they can be found if something goes missing. You can also strengthen your technology processes to give your business the protection it needs. You can find out more about boosting shipment security at Authena.io
Damaged or missing cargo
Damaged or missing cargo are two of the biggest risks to your shipping operations. You’ll find that many problems relating to damage can be avoided through better packaging while ensuring everything is loaded carefully in your relevant vessel.
Missing cargo can be caused by a number of events. Firstly, missing cargo can be the result of poor packaging, but in many cases, missing cargo is due to theft. You’ll want to ensure a secure shipping security method like the one provided by Authena to help you track your cargo in real-time so that you will be able to know where your cargo is at all times. Raising the alarm as soon as you become aware of the issue could help you reach a better outcome.
As mentioned earlier, the COVID-19 pandemic has had an unprecedented effect on the shipping industry. It’s a classic example of an unexpected event that has the potential to cause significant disruption.
But COVID-19 isn’t the only unexpected event that could affect your operations. Countries all over the world have different holidays, closures, working hours, and days that can affect your shipments if you don’t keep on top of what’s going on in these territories. Meanwhile, unexpected delays can happen as a result of strikes and problems happening within the countries themselves, including natural disasters, war, and others.
Being able to forecast and plan as much as possible can help you avoid many problems, but you’ll also need contingencies in place to ensure your operations can continue. You’ll need a degree of flexibility to help manage these issues, and processes which can help you make alterations where needed.
Using up-to-date security practices can be vital for understanding where your cargo is at all times, allowing you to work your way through delays and other issues to ensure you can get your shipments to their final destination.
While the world is still facing a precarious situation, things are beginning to improve. Those within the shipping industry need to consider the significant security threats that exist, and how they can put measures in place to protect against them. Making the most of technology and more effective planning can solve many of the problems affecting shipping today, while also helping to set a clear direction for the future.