Since 9-11-2001, the U.S. government has heightened numerous security measures, including those that govern shipments in and out of the United States. Improving the security of your supply chain not only reassures your business partners that you are being diligent—it can also help curtail counterfeiting.
One government security initiative is called Customs Trade Partnership Against Terrorism (C-TPAT) under which partners voluntarily adopt practices and procedures. Companies are then independently audited to verify compliance. The concept is similar to seeking Underwriters’ Labs (UL) approval: C-TPAT validation means a company has met the standards for secure shipments.
If containers don’t have to be opened and inspected, counterfeiters are less likely to swap products or introduce bogus goods into the supply chain. Other measures companies can take include:
• Using seals on all containers and noting seal numbers on shipping manifests to protect
containers from being opened and resealed
• Fully inspecting carrier documents
• Developing partnerships with customs authorities to exchange information and target shipments suspected of containing counterfeit products