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Shipmaster's Security Manual: 2022 [paper]
Contains guidance to shipowners, Masters and crew on the most pertinent security challenges facing the maritime industry today.
Totalling seven chapters, the manual covers the following topics:
Armed conflict and war, which is the result of conflicts between different actors including state- as well as non-state actors. In recent years the state of conflict between Iran/Iranian proxies and US/UK/Israeli interests, and recently the Russian invasion of Ukraine, has seen more and more cases where weapons of war has been directed against commercial ships.
Piracy and armed robbery in the Gulf of Guinea, off Somalia, and in Southeast Asia, with a focus on Gulf of Guinea. Niger delta pirates remain the primary piracy threat in the world. BIMCO has been in the forefront to help the maritime industry mitigate the risks. In early 2022, BIMCO released a standard contract for the employment of Security Escort Vessels (SEV-GUARDCON). In Gulf of Guinea the use of SEV has become more and more the norm but their use entails commercial risks which should be managed by using the SEV-GUARDCON, a copy of which is included in this edition of the manual.
Cyber security, especially focussing on onboard risk management and the interface with shore. While the industry has not yet seen cyber security incidents with major safety implications the cyber threats are continually developing, and the increased sophistication of criminals require cyber risk management to be steadily updated.
Drug smuggling is increasing threat to shipowners and crew. Smugglers typically in South- and Central America abuse the ships as “mules” by concealing drugs on board or even welding containers to the underwater hull. In cases where drugs are found on board some port States react forcefully and detain ships and crew for prolonged periods despite lack of evidence to suggest shipowner or crew involvement.
The ISPS Code, which is the cornerstone document for managing risks from terrorists against ships and port facilities and furthermore subject to several audits and compliance checks.
Stowaways, continue to remain a big risk to shipping operations because of the administrative- and practical burden and not least cost associated with resolving stowaway cases. In some cases, stowaways even represent a security threat to the crew on board.
Mass mixed migration by sea, which continues to disrupt the operation of ships and in some cases develop into a humanitarian crisis on board with owners and crew caught in a limbo between state migration politics of coastal and flag states.