Review of Article on Supply Chain Security Issues

We continue our series of reviews on articles relevant to key OpticalLock markets, where supply chain security issues play a prominent role. This particular review post takes us to an extensive piece which appeared in Inbound Logistics titled: Locking Down Supply Chain Security.

This is a wide-ranging article which covers quite of bit of ground on the topic of supply chain security issues including cargo theft, piracy and terrorism. It addresses specific areas of concern such as national transportation and security policy, over-the-road cargo protection, hazardous materials on rail systems, air cargo standards, the future of ports, the proper use of new technology tools and overall cargo security best practices. Here are some of the more important points made in this article:

Global Supply Chain Security Issues Covered in the Article

  • Global supply chain security becomes more complicated over time.
  • Government policy is an important factor, but both transportation service providers and shippers must take steps to protect against cargo theft.
  • In the 1990s, most trucking-related cargo theft occurred in warehouses. Today cargo is most at risk in-transit, especially when it is stopped in an unsecured location.
  • The rail system is a major point of emphasis for chemical security, both with respect to terrorism and accidental disasters.
  • Air Cargo represents 40% of global trade, yet air cargo security is compromised by inconsistent approaches taken between trading partner countries. Setting common air cargo standard across international borders is very important.
  • While US ports are safer than they were prior to the passage of the Maritime Transportation Safety Act in 2002, much still needs to be done to enhance port security. New technologies can take a leading role in this endeavor.
  • Technology companies are offering advanced technologies which offer better asset tracking, access control, more detailed data and anti-tamper products and services. There is no excuse for not using these new technologies to reduce supply chain security issues.
  • Best practices in supply chain security include supply chain participant credentialing, cargo content screening/validation, advance notification of contents to destination countries, ensuring in-transit cargo security via locks and seals, limiting and monitoring cargo access within the supply chain, inspecting cargo on entry and risk management awareness & training.

I’ve marked important points with italics in the bullet points above that relate directly to the OpticalLock iLock product. OpticalLock has created a unique device which combines the security, convenience and ubiquity of a standard padlock with GPS tracking, patented tamper-evidence technology and real-time wireless alerts triggered by multiple sensors. OpticalLock effective replaces a lock, GPS tracker and security seals in one package which can be used to either reduce overall security device cost/complexity, or add another layer of security in conjunction with other technologies.

In summary, the basic thesis of the article is that there is a large, complex set of supply chain security issues that require a comprehensive, multi-party approach to manage effectively.

You can read the entire original text of this article at

Please contact us to join the OpticalLock beta program, or to explore on how our product can help enhance your supply chain transportation or storage facility security!

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