An Extended Guide to Maritime Security

guide to maritime security

Most of the world’s trade is happening by sea plus the sea also plays a crucial role in international relationships. That’s why ensuring vigilant security in the maritime industry needs effort and lots of caution. For the vast area of the maritime industry and as there’s a lot to handle, it needs tremendous knowledge and precautions to enact security enforcement. That’s why today’s topic is “Guide to Maritime Security”.

In this article, we’ll be clear about everything related to Doric maritime security issues and threats. Maritime security is a skilled sector in the marine field that defends its vessels and crews from internal or external threats. So, let’s not wait anymore and get into the main points. Dig in! 


What Is Maritime Security?


Through maritime security in general we can understand the protection of vessels & crews from internal and external threats. But, there’s a major meaning hidden behind the single term maritime security. It can refer to port or offshore security, prevention against any smuggling or protecting the sea area. 

So, as you can see maritime security isn’t a simple action or task, rather it concerns a vast range. Mainly, 4 sectors are the concerns of maritime security. Such as- 

  1. National Security 
  2. Human Security 
  3. Marine Environment & 
  4. Economic Environment 

Through tight supervision and inspection, the marine industry protects the sea, and the human economy from terrorism, piracy, illegal trafficking, robbery or pollution. The marine industry tries hard to minimize the upcoming threats and handle those with meticulous hands. 

With the growing skilled hands, modern technology and vigilant training of the crews the shipboard security should be able to handle the threats. As the marine area is super vast and a massive amount of goods are traded on a daily basis, it’s difficult to inspect or operate all the shipments. 


Common Threats in Marine Industry 600


Ensuring security is tough in the modern maritime industry. The maritime industry is vast, and much to check and the threats are also the latest at the current time. Now, it’s a matter of fact that the security officers must have to be vigilant not only to prevent the threats but also to determine the new ways of threats. 

The Doric maritime industry protects oceans, territorial water, rivers, ports, and regional seas. They track down any illegal work and take their actions. We all know that even small attacks can be deadly in the sea and may cause loss of lives with the property. So, better be cautious about all the risks. Here we go with the maritime industry threats-


1. Trespassing 


Trespassing is a common method terrorists use to do individual crimes like smuggling or trafficking. Security officers must be careful about all their vessels in port and their authority. No unauthorized military personnel can handle sensitive equipment as it can lead to destructive circumstances. 


2. Thievery 


On the sea line, most of the valuable goods are traded as a daily bonus. Local or international level attempts may take place to steal those goods. So, the officers should be careful both offshore and onshore. There should be adequate numbers of employees with security detectors. Plus, CCTV cameras with enough lighting should be arranged. 


3. Piracy 


Piracy is a problem in the high sea area. It’s an age-old problem which is still alive and successful. Piracy includes hijacking, detention of ships or boats or plundering. The main goal of piracy is to steal the ship or cargo with valuable assets and those who steal these assets are pirates. 

and speaking of pirates we may remember the pirates of the Caribbean, the legendary image of shabby clothes, eye patches, dirty teeth and nails with pet parrots! But in reality, piracy is one of the most warned threats in the maritime industry. The local government has taken action against this piracy with wonderful security. 

For example- according to International Maritime Organization(IMO) regulations, any ship can send data, signal or distress warning if they are attacked by pirates. Moreover, to prevent piracy there’re also some crucial steps security officers need to follow. Such as-

  1. Search the ship before leaving the port.
  2. If the officers need to discuss the route or something, do it in remote or secret places. Otherwise, avoid discussing in open places.
  3. Keep vigilant eyes on the areas where it’s prone to piracy. 

There are some places utmost notorious for piracy. Those are-

  • Arabian Sea & Gulf of Aden
  • the Gulf of Guinea
  • the South China Sea
  • the Persian Gulf

4. Smuggling 


Smuggling or trafficking is always a great concern for the entire nation. The more the maritime industry is developing with new and latest technologies and ideas, the more smugglers are developing their ideas to smuggle illegal goods. 

Not only is goods smuggling, but human trafficking is also happening in this modern time. The govt’ can’t handle all the illegal immigration that’s why the smugglers use sea routes to do their human trafficking work. Human trafficking is a violation of human rights especially when it’s on the seas. Yet, proper maritime security should be able to minimize all the problems. 


5. Illegal Fishing


Fishing regulations show fishing time, water area, and fish harvesting in protected water areas. Illegal fishing means without any valid authorization fishing carried out by overseas cargo in water under the control of another state. It’s a breach of contract and regulations. It leads to loss of money and wealth by compensation. 

The people who do illegal fishing use multiple ways to fish illegally. Such as-

  • Ghost fishing
  • Bycatch
  • Overfishing
  • Cyanide Fishing.

6. Maritime Pollution


Maritime pollution nowadays is a far worse situation. It’s increasing with the rapid growth of population and globalization. However, illegal marine pollution refers to polluting the seawater with illegal emission of hazardous substances.

Most national and international laws forbid the cargo and vessels to dump hazardous chemicals on the ocean as it pollutes water, harms the sea creatures and ruins the environment. Marine pollution includes-

  1. Industrial waste
  2. Oil seeping
  3. Sewage
  4. Plastic pollution and the list goes on. 

Proper safety protocols and measures should be taken to avoid this pollution and disasters from the industrial cargo. 

7. Maritime Cyber Threat


As we all know, modern problems require a modern solution. The cyber threat to the maritime industry is a new phenomenon. The industry is slowly adapting to ensure safety from this cyber threat. The cyber threat in maritime refers to stealing precious data that a company holds and protects such as-cargo details, ship routes, employee details and so on.

Cybercriminals not only hack the valuable information but also hack the hardware and sensors of the vessel, so they can control it. These risks are extremely disastrous and costly, yet the industry is copying slowly. 

Measures Taken by Doric Maritime Ship Security 


Until now you’ve already seen the potential threats to our maritime industry. Regarding any country or nation, these problems are common. Now, it’s our turn to see the maritime safety group taking measures taken by Doric to minimize the loss or prevent these troubles. So, let’s get into it-


1. Inspect the Vessels & Cargos Regularly 


The Port area is huge and inspecting the entire port area with all cargo and vessels is quite tough in some parts it’s inaccessible. That’s why theft and trafficking happen. The security officers should keep their observation of the vessels and check for all the things in an op way. 

2. Port Security 


Our Port security has a vast meaning behind these two simple words. Port security means the law and security used to protect and safeguard the shipping ports from unlawful activities. Port security concerns one country with another country through a treaty. Therefore, port security comes under the International Ship &  Security Code 2002. 

3. Maintenance to Improve Security 


Sometimes abroad cargos or vessels come in for trade that don’t have proper or standard security measures. Then, the security officers can take care of those security measures right away without the permission of the sender country.

4. Modifications


There can be changes in the security plan or route of vessels. VSO must inform the security officers so that they can change and improve the security section more powerfully. 

5. Stop Doing Old Fashioned Patrolling 


Most of the ports still have human patrolling which is done by the port security team. You might not get familiar with the Nigerian Navy Team. It sends small boats or crews to specific areas to patrol and compensate. But, human old-fashioned patrolling is almost useless now because of the latest innovative ways of illegal threats. 

Henceforth, modern patrols should be designed with up-to-date technology that can provide enough speed and hassle-free identification. There should be the use of sonar, radar, uncrewed vehicles with sensors, and modern weapons. 

6. Handling the Cargo


While unloading all the shipped goods, the security officers should check that all the procedures are done according to protocol. They should ensure proper checking and inspection through the entire vessel including bunkers. 

7. Make Note of Problems


If there’s anything out of ordinary, any crew members or staff of the vessel should inform the security officers. The security officers will take note of the findings and inform these companies or higher security officers. 

8. Monitor New Crew Members 


In a vessel, a security officer should make sure that all the crews are behaving according to the protocol. There shouldn’t be any nepotism or negligence. However, it’s similar to security equipment. The security officer should operate, take care of, test and maintain all the weapons along with security equipment with care and under regulations. 

9. Bring Awareness & Vigilance 


The security officers are superior and they should train the crew members to be alert in any kind of situation. As the safety of the goods and wealth are depending on them, all of their roles are extremely important. Train them to report anything that can cause any potential harm. 

10. Implement Training 


Just like mentioned above, the security officers should train the staff and crew members on their roles. They should be trained about the situation in normal operations or any critical threat. The staff and crews should understand their role, so they can stay alert in their positions.

Challenging Threats to Maritime Industry 


With the latest technologies, the maritime industry is evolving gradually. As more improvement is happening, more visible problems are arising. The smugglers and criminals are up to date with new technologies and sometimes they are two steps ahead of the security officers, which is troublesome. 

However, with better technologies and proper systems, the officers should be able to identify the weak spots better and ensure security measures. Cybersecurity is one of the most crucial places the authority should be focused on.  The hackers and criminals steal valuable data from the company and export or sell that data for money. 

In the data, there can be route info, cargo details, or employee information. Along with this information, the hackers can also hack the hardware and electronic system of the vessel, so they can control the entire ship. It’s mandatory that, as time changes, the technology changes and the protocol should change for the betterment of the maritime industry. 

Development requires changes that can be occurred through newly adapted methods. Recently, there’s been a rumor of automated shipping vessels without any crews. If it can be real, then it’ll be extremely cost-effective and bring more potential for the cargo companies. 



Q: What are the differences between maritime security and maritime safety?

Ans: Both these two terms maritime security and maritime safety are used on a similar basis. Still, there is a subtle difference. Maritime safety refers to the protection of the sea, ports, vessels, and goods from unintentional dangers like storms or extreme waves in the sea. 

Whereas, maritime security means the protection of offshore, onshore, and cargo goods from intentional hazards such as piracy or hijacking. These are the two basic differences between maritime security and safety. 

Q: How many levels does maritime security have?

Ans: In the pre-planned protocol, there is a three-tiered system designed to easily contact the coast guards. This three-tiered system is designed to communicate with the coast guards if there is an emergency and any threats. 

Q: What are the maritime security challenges? 

Ans: There are a couple of upcoming challenges our modern maritime industry needs to face. Such as-

  1. Piracy
  2. Trespassing
  3. Human trafficking 
  4. Drug smuggling 
  5. Thievery 
  6. Lack of manpower 
  7. Cybercrime 
  8. Pollution and environmental damage.

Wrap Up


Time to sum up the guide to maritime security! We can say that at this time the marine industry is at its peak. Now, through sea portals and international relations, the tradings are growing and advancing. Maritime Cyber Risk Management and Safety Management System are working under the protocol of the Maritime Transport Security Act. 

Life as a marine security guard is extremely tough and they have a huge responsibility on them to protect the goods and vessels. That’s why companies should be more careful and invest more in the training of security staff, so they can contribute to their country’s well-being.



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