The Regional Maritime Security Committee (AMSC) has released a report showing that AMSCs face significant challenges with the constantly changing threat landscape across the physical and cyber domains.
#1 Impact of COVID-19
- COVID-19 and related social distancing requirements have created challenges for internal AMSC meetings and assignments.
- Industry and government partners are increasingly reliant on virtual platforms that are capable of meeting attendee schedules but are not ideal for developing and maintaining relationships.
- Virtual environments present security concerns depending on the nature of the discussion.
#2 Cybersecurity and MTS
- The public and private sectors are challenged in finding a trained and experienced cyber workforce.
- Some AMSCs noted that current network incident reporting requirements and enforcement against non-reporting are inadequate.
- Several AMSCs also said the maritime industry is interested in maintaining privacy after reporting because information is shared within the government.
- The AMSCs also note that they regularly receive the same general cybersecurity alerts, warnings and information from multiple agencies.
#3 Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) access to the MTS
- UAS intrusions into MTSA-managed facilities continue to raise questions and concerns, and AMSCs perceive UAS as a serious threat to maritime security and safety.
- AMSCs report that current federal law to reduce the risk of UAS to port areas is largely ineffective and that all levels of law enforcement lack the authority, policy, and equipment to identify and prevent safely unauthorized UAS.
AMSC reports have identified many useful and practical recommendations outlined below.
#1 Cybersecurity / Cyber Risk Management
- The AMSCs recommend that the CG Cyber Command and the Port and Facility Compliance Office (CG-FAC) establish a unified way to communicate cyber alerts and advice.
- Others suggested providing approved cybersecurity training to AMSC members, which would outline the Coast Guard’s role in relation to cyber incident response efforts.
- AMSCs should also start discussing emerging technology expected in the next few years (e.g. 5G network integration) and start developing mitigation strategies.
#2 Homeport 2.0
- Homeport 2.0 is difficult to navigate, and some AMSCs have proposed an overhaul of Homeport to make the safe side of Homeport more accessible and user-friendly.
- AMSCs will benefit from training on Homeport 2.0 functions and a more comprehensive user guide.
- The AMSCs also suggested using alternative platforms such as the Homeland Security Information Network (HSIN) Community of Interest forum to encourage AMSC participation.
- The AMSCs ask the Coast Guard and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to support new state and local laws, or amend existing federal laws, to make available to state and federal law enforcement. and local tools to intervene and prosecute cases where maritime infrastructure and critical assets are at risk from the UAS.
- AMSC has proposed a National AMSC UAS forum, similar to the National AMSC Cyber Subcommittee.
- The AMSCs also feel the Coast Guard should explore adding MTSA-managed facilities to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) flight restriction list and implementing it nationally.
- Coast Guard should also provide training in Counter-UAS technology and enforcement tools and capabilities.
#4 Active Shooter (AS) / Active Threat (AT) Incident
- AMSCs note that the AS/AT situation continues to intensify across the country. AS/AT in the Maritime Sector is currently of great interest as ferries and sea attractions are potential targets.
- AMSCs recommend national policy to address the disparity between Coast Guard and local law enforcement use of force, which can impede the creation of local AS/AT plans. methods and training.
#5 Restructure PSGP
The current structure of the PSGP has rationale for project investment (IJs) from MTSA-managed entities (potential terrorist targets), which compete with IJs from emergency response agencies who will try to assist them after the Traffic Security Incident.
DISCOVER MORE AT AMSC REPORT