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United States Government Accountability Office GAO January 2008 Report to Congressional Requesters SUPPLY CHAIN SECURITY Examinations of HighRisk Cargo at Foreign Seaports Have Increased, but Improved Data Collection and Performance Measures Are Needed GAO-08-187 January 2008 SUPPLY CHAIN SECURITY Highlights Highlights of GAO-08-187, a report to congressional requesters Accountability Integrity Reliability Examinations of High-Risk Cargo at Foreign Seaports Have Increased, but Improved
    United States Government Accountability Office GAO Report to Congressional Requesters SUPPLY CHAINSECURITYExaminations of High-Risk Cargo at ForeignSeaports HaveIncreased, butImproved DataCollection andPerformanceMeasures Are Needed January 2008GAO-08-187  What GAO Found United States Government Accountability Office Why GAO Did This Study H ighlights Accountability Integrity Reliability   January 2008   SUPPLY CHAIN SECURITY Examination s of Hi g h-Ri s k Car g o at Forei g n S eaport s  Have Increa s ed, but Improved Data Collection andPerformance Mea s ure s Are Needed Highlights ofGAO-08-187, a report tocongressional requesters Customs and Border Protection’s(CBP) Container Security Initiative(CSI) aims to identify and examinehigh-risk U.S.-bound cargo atforeign seaports. GAO reported in2003 and 2005 that CSI helped toenhance homeland security, andrecommended actions tostrengthen the program. Thisreport updates information andassesses how CBP has (1)contributed to strategic planningfor supply chain security, (2)strengthened CSI operations, and(3) evaluated CSI operations. Toaddress these issues, GAOinterviewed CBP officials andreviewed CSI evaluations and performance measures. GAO also visited selected U.S. and CSIseaports, and met with U.S. andforeign government officials. What GAO Recommend s  GAO recommends that CBPenhance data collected on CSIteam performance, hostgovernment examinations, andrelated performance measures.CBP concurred with the recom-mendation to enhance data onteam performance. It partiallyconcurred with the need toenhance data on host examin-ations, stating that it alreadyconducts actions to improve suchdata. However, these actions donot systematically collect data on people, processes, or technologyused by host governments toexamine U.S.-bound containers.CBP partially concurred with theneed to enhance performancemeasures, but stated it alreadycaptures core program functions.We still see room for improvement. By collaborating on the development of the Department of HomelandSecurity’s  Strategy to Enhance International Supply Chain Security, and byrevising the CSI strategic plan as GAO recommended, CBP has contributed tothe overall U.S. strategic planning efforts related to enhancing the security forthe overseas supply chain. Also, CBP reached its targets of operating CSI in 58foreign seaports, and thereby having 86 percent of all U.S.-bound cargocontainers pass through CSI seaports in fiscal year 2007—representing asteady increase in these measures of CSI performance.To strengthen CSI operations, CBP has sought to address human capitalchallenges and previous GAO recommendations by increasing CSI staffinglevels closer to those called for in its staffing model and revising its humancapital plan. However, challenges remain because CBP continues to rely, in part, on a temporary workforce; has not determined how to optimize itsstaffing resources; and reports difficulties in identifying sufficient numbers of qualified staff. In addition, CBP has enhanced relationships with hostgovernments participating in CSI. However, hurdles to cooperation remain atsome seaports, such as restrictions on CSI teams witnessing examinations.CBP improved its evaluation of CSI team performance at seaports, butlimitations remain in the evaluation process that affect the accuracy andcompleteness of data collected. CBP has not set minimum technical criteriafor equipment or systematically collected information on the equipment, people, and processes involved in CSI host government examinations of high-risk, U.S-bound container cargo. Also, CBP has not developed generalguidelines to use in assessing the reliability of these examinations. Thus, CBP potentially lacks information to ensure that host government examinationscan detect and identify weapons of mass destruction, which is importantbecause containers are typically not reexamined in the United States if already examined at a CSI seaport. CBP refined overall CSI performancemeasures, but has not fully developed performance measures and annualtargets for core CSI functions, such as the examination of high-risk containersbefore they are placed on vessels bound for the United States. Theseweaknesses in CBP’s data collection and performance measures potentiallylimit the information available on overall CSI effectiveness. Container s   S tacked on a Ve ss el at a C S I Port S o u rce: GAO.   To view the full product, including the scopeand methodology, click onGAO-08-187.For more information, contact Stephen L.Caldwell at (202) 512-9610 orcaldwells@gao.gov.    Contents Letter 1Results in Brief 5Background 8 CBP Collaborated on the DHS Strategy to Enhance InternationalSupply Chain Security, and Met Goals for CSI Expansion andIncreased Container Examination 17To Strengthen CSI Operations, CBP Has Taken Steps to AddressHuman Capital Challenges and Enhance Host GovernmentRelations, but Operational Challenges Remain 24CBP Has Enhanced Its CSI Evaluations at CSI Seaports andPerformance Measures but Still Does Not Capture CriticalInformation about Host Government Examination Systems 33Conclusions 44 Recommendations for Executive Action 46 Agency Comments and Our Evaluation 46  Appendix I Objectives, Scope, and Methodology 50  Appendix II Comments from the Department of HomelandSecurity 54  Appendix III Container Security Initiative Seaports 58  Appendix IV CSI Activities and Equipment 61  Appendix V CSI Performance Measures 67  Appendix VI GAO Contact and Staff Acknowledgments 69 Related GAO Products 70 Page i GAO-08-187 Supply Chain Security    Tables Table 1: Major U. S. Initiatives to Secure Oceangoing Containers 11Table 2: 58 CSI seaports as of September 2007 58Table 3: CSI Performance Measures 67 Figures Figure 1: Overview of Key Participants Involved in ShippingContainers in the International Supply Chain 9Figure 2: Map of World with Countries Participating in CSI 13Figure 3: CSI Targeting and Examination Activities 16Figure 4: CBP Initiatives in the U.S. Supply Chain Security Strategy 19Figure 5: Number of Operational CSI Seaports and Percentage of Total U.S-bound Containers Passing Through CSISeaports, 2002-2007 22Figure 6: View of the Physical Layout of a Congested CSI Seaport 31Figure 7: Stacked Containers on a Shipping Vessel at a CSI Seaport 32Figure 8: CSI Process for Targeting and Examining High-riskContainers Overseas 62Figure 9: CBP Official Using Radiation Isotope Identifier Device toExamine Container at CSI Seaport 65Figure 10: Commercial Sample Image Produced by NonintrusiveImaging X-ray Equipment of a Container Loaded on aTruck Trailer 66 Page ii GAO-08-187 Supply Chain Security
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