The shipping industry is one of the largest markets on the planet and ensuring the continuous and safe operations at sea requires decisive effort. Implementing maritime security requires knowledge and vigilance and is essential to enhancing the smooth flow of international trade.

Maritime security is a specialized field and security officials must use best practices to protect the ship from internal and external threats. These threats come in many forms and each requires a different response strategy. Security risks are not always malicious, but maintaining the safety of ships is a permanent priority.

What does “Maritime Security” mean?

Maritime security is the general term for the protection of ships and ports, both internally and externally. Threats from which ships and shipping companies need protection include terrorism, piracy, robbery and the smuggling of goods and people.

Through surveillance, inspection and prevention procedures, the maritime industry makes every effort to minimize threats to maritime security, both malicious and accidental. And as the industry evolves and grows, vigilance, regulations and training need to keep pace with technology and increased threats.

Greater emphasis has now been placed on protecting the maritime sector from terrorism and similar attacks, both in port and at sea. Several government and international organizations have been set up to help set standards for improving maritime security.

Security is not only the responsibility of ship security officers, but also the job of the crew as a whole, so it is extremely important for companies to train staff (land and sea) so that their ships are more likely to stop any threat in a timely and effective manner.

Possible types of risks


When transporting valuables, attempts are sometimes made to steal these goods from ships. Security officers must be careful for this reason both in port and at sea to ensure that the valuable and sensitive cargo remains intact and safe.


Security officers must make sure that when their ship is in port, no unauthorized person violates the cargo or sensitive equipment. Even if the authorized crew members perform their work properly, a trespasser can violate the cargo or some sensitive equipment, which can lead to serious consequences at sea.

Large-scale security measures address things that can happen internationally, usually as a result of more malicious operations than individual crimes, such as terrorism, environmental crime, smuggling and human trafficking.

Terrorist threats

Recent developments in telecommunications and the international supply chain have increased the possibilities of terrorist attacks. Criminals sometimes try to use maritime channels to transport dangerous weapons and materials.

Terrorists use modes of transport because they can move goods and people to advance their cause, and the shipping industry is a primary target. They use shipping in their quest to undermine global political and economic security. Security officers must be careful and aware of the channels that terrorists are likely to use to attack.


Today’s pirates and criminals are usually well organized and equipped with advanced communication and technological equipment.

Proper training and experience in maritime security can help crew members prepare and deal safely with a pirates attack.

Private companies providing manned security services to the shipping industry

Shipping companies that have either their own or a managed fleet, as well as other parties to a shipping operation (e.g. charterers), can turn to a maritime security services provider such as UNITUS MARITIME SOLUTIONS. The same applies to public or private port organizations or companies with off-shore activities (oil & gas).

UMS (a subsidiary of UNITED SECURITY) is a private maritime security services provider, that offers high quality services to all stakeholders. Its mission is to protect lives and maritime assets from all the threats that exist in today’s world, both at sea and at ports.

Unitus Maritime Solutions operatives are recruited, trained and evaluated to the highest standards in the Maritime Security Services Industry.

They are very experienced former Navy or Army Officers who maintain a high level of Operational Skills, Morale and Dedication in the Scope of Operation. They always comply with the Operational Commands provided by the UMS Operations Manager.

For more information contact