INTERVIEW/INSURANCE\\\ Is your supply chain safe from the cyber-criminals?
Issue 5 2014 - Freight Business Journal Questions, questions
The first in an occasional series where FBJ quizzes industry figures about their life and times and views on current developments. Fittingly, our first subject is Peter Quantrill, director general of the British International Freight Association (BIFA). Peter Quantrill has many years
of experience in the forwarding and transportation sector and began his career with Aer Lingus in operations and cargo sales. He then joined Mercury Airfreight International where he eventually became managing director and, following Mercury’s acquisition by Rockwood,
subsidiary Atlasair as managing director and eventually assumed responsibility for all UPS activities in the UK. He then joined Emery Worldwide as vice president EMEA and eventually became a board member, based in its corporate HQ in California. When Emery was rebranded Menlo Forwarding, he became executive VP. Peter Quantrill became BIFA’s director general in 2007.
Q. What was your first job? (In any industry, not necessarily freight or transport).
A: Worked for a specialist jazz record retailer and concert promoter.
Q. How did you first get involved in the freight industry? A: I was and remain a jazz and blues fan and thought working for an airline would be a good route to getting to see my heroes in the US. I joined an airline initially on the passenger side but very quickly moved into cargo.
Q. Did you plan to get involved in freight – did you have much notion of the industry before you got involved with it?
A: A nodding acquaintance with the airline industry but no awareness whatsoever of the freight sector.
Q. What has been the biggest achievement or high point of your career in the freight industry?
A: Becoming director general of BIFA of course.
Q. Any low point(s)? A: Surprisingly few, perhaps a couple of occasions parent companies not understanding the business made poor investment decisions and squandered opportunities.
Q. If you had the undivided attention of the Secretary of State for Transport for ten minutes, what would you tell him?
A: I would emphasise the need for “joined up thinking” in particular with respect to infrastructure and developing strategy for a multimodal spectrum. Allied to this the need to drive quicker and clearer decision making (aſter appropriate due diligence) and to take a long term view on major projects rather than being solely focussed on the next general election.
Q. What is the biggest challenge facing the freight industry today? A: The need to coordinate compliance programmes such as security and customs to provide greater clarity and efficiency and most of all avoid redundant duplicated effort.
Q. Where do you see the freight industry in 12 months’ time? A: Returning to sustainable growth, probably more consolidation and despite some pundits views, opportunities in a growth environment for the multinationals, as well as major independents and SMEs.
improve efficiency and opportunities for transport carriers and indeed mitigate their exposure to theſt and fraud in some respects, but unfortunately they equally benefit organised criminal organisations. More widely available invasive cyber- technology means a greater risk to legitimate trade. The ingenuity of thieves and
fraudsters has always surprised unsuspecting victims. The stakes are high and it is clear that the international supply chain, which by its nature facilitates movement across borders,
being targeted in order to traffik people and drugs, as well as other illegal trades such as dumping waste or intercepting valuable cargoes. TT
Club has previously
highlighted the increasing fraudulent use of internet clearing sites. Operators are particularly exposed when they need assistance in unfamiliar regions, especially at short notice, when they may
be tempted to use unknown subcontractors through such sites. There are documented
instances of criminal organisations buying legitimate but failing transport operators and continuing to trade in their name, predominantly on line and in a state of virtual insolvency, waiting for the opportunity to receive a valuable cargo before disappearing. More simply in other cases, fraudulent road hauliers advertise vehicles available for backloads, again hoping to trap an unsuspecting forwarder, in too much of a hurry to carry out proper checks, and with a high-priced cargo to move. Press reports recently
however have identified another type of IT based theſt - cyber- criminals may access and take control of operators’ IT systems, extracting or manipulating valuable data. What first appears to be
a petty break-in at an office with minimal damage and nothing physically removed,
on post-incident investigation is revealed to be criminals physically installing spyware within the operator’s IT network. More typically, though, the criminals identify targets (generally individuals) with inadequate cyber-security, combined with sufficient access and authority rights. Operational executives who may travel extensively can be particularly exposed. The type of information being
sought may be release codes for containers from ports and terminals. However, spyware can
record movements, key
strokes, and even download and print documents and screen shots to an external source. In the instances discovered to date, criminals have apparently focused on individual containers, taking steps to track the units through to the destination discharge port. Once the container has arrived, the perpetrators intervene, collecting the required release data from the unsuspecting operator’s IT systems, and
Freight insurance specialist TT Club’s claims executive Mike Yarwood investigates how cyber-criminals are targeting transport operators.
allowing the container to be released into their custody. Known incidents seem to be
related to drug trafficking but such technologies could very easily be used to infiltrate other areas of the supply chain, from freight forwarders through to warehouse operators. Never underestimate the value of the information
in your supply
chain. Vigilance and due diligence
in day-to-day operations – the more physical side – are clearly vital, together with general security of
However, it would also be wise for operators to investigate better means of
from and detection of hacking and spyware. A well informed and transparent relationship between risk management teams and IT departments is of paramount importance. But oſten there, is a lack of cohesion; the IT department is seen as a mere service provider to operations. Both must be seamlessly aligned for effective management of cyber-security.
Henderson Insurance enters marine market
Henderson Insurance Brokers has set up a new marine division and has won new insurance work for port movement of goods, and storage of high value items. It can cover most types of marine cargo, plus vessels, ports and harbours. Steve Gordon, associate
director, marine, said: “We identified an opportunity in the market, as there is not much specialist marine insurance done outside London in some of the traditional lines such as hull and machinery, protection and indemnity, charterers’ liability
and ports and terminals. “It is quite rare for specialist
London-based brokers to work with regional clients in the UK, which generally creates a skills gap in the marine sector.” The company has an
established client base among the major UK port and harbour operators, ship owners and charterers but is also able to insure clients with small to medium-sized operations in the maritime sector. The new division can arrange cover for almost all areas of the
marine industry, and has specific knowledge in working
cargo owners, freight forwarders, hauliers, commercial vessel owners and operators, ship managers and agents, ports and terminals, marine trades, build and repair yards and super- yachts. It is also developing bespoke
schemes for industry sectors for all Henderson branches, in order to provide an even greater service to clients. Henderson, the fiſth largest independent insurance broker in
the UK, has doubled the size of its Hessle branch and now employs 16 people.
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