Allen Gina Discusses Port Technology Innovation at U.S./Canada Border Conference

While moderating a panel at the annual U.S./Canada Border Conference in Detroit titled, “Ports of Entry: Next Generation Technology”, CT Strategies’ Partner Allen Gina discussed the role played by emerging technology in facilitating the movement of passengers and cargo across land borders. Mr. Gina was joined by Richard DiNucci, who, at the time served as U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), Executive Director, Cargo and Conveyance Security and has now become the Port Director at San Francisco Airport; as well as Maurice Chénier, Chief Information Officer, Vice-President, Information, Science and Technology, Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA).

Given the increasing need to: screen cargo, conveyances, and people at the speed of commerce; perform frictionless trade processing; and run border management operations “live”, new and innovative capabilities must be leveraged in order to handle increasing volumes at the border. Tools such as multi-energy imaging equipment, advanced radiation portal monitors, license plate readers, RFID devices, common viewer image-sharing software, and new handheld technologies to screen vehicles and cargo can all make significant contributions to managing borders more efficiently and securely.
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Technology platforms for port of entry operations must be flexible, nimble, and adaptable while eventually employing machine learning and cognitive thinking. Remote access capabilities and virtual co-location functions must be allowed for as new systems are built out at the ports. Transitioning to the ports of the future will require creative thinking from both governments and the private sector, not just in creating new technologies, but also in knowing how to best implement them in existing environments. The respective know-how to build the port of the future exists in both the tech industry and in the border management agencies. However, an additional critical factor is in making the port of the future a reality is regular, open communication between the public and private sector about the needs of the ports, the capabilities of existing/emerging technology, and the procurement navigation solutions to make them viable. 

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