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About the Author

Gary M. Barraco
Director, Global Product Marketing
Amber Road

Gary is responsible for developing strategic product marketing direction and presenting the Amber Road brand and solutions worldwide. As the platform evangelist, Gary develops and launches customer insights, go-to-market plans, product messaging and content, and field marketing tactics which establish Amber Road’s solutions as a standard in the Global Trade Management space.
Previously, Gary was VP, Industry Development for ecVision for 9 years prior to its acquisition by Amber Road. He also held marketing positions with tech companies where he was instrumental in implementing programs that yielded exponential growth and spearheaded alliance relationships with a range of third-party organizations. He has 20 years of active military service where his primary specialty was providing marketing support to Army National Guard recruiting and retention operations in New Jersey.

Gary received a BS from the State University of New York and is currently pursuing a Master’s degree at Moravian College. He is a member of the American Apparel and Footwear Association, Footwear Distributors Retailers Association, Outdoor Industry Association, US Fashion Industry Association, Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals, and American Association of Exporters and Importers where he serves on various committees and planning groups.

For more information, please visit

Supply Chain Comment

By Gary M. Barraco, Director, Global Product Marketing, Amber Road

January 28, 2016

New Paradigm of Heightening Supply Chain Security

Six Critical Elements of a Strong Cargo Security Program

Barraco Says:

Supply chain assessments must begin with identifying any risk that will interrupt the flow of goods from the location where materials are originally sourced to the end product on store shelves.
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Global supply chains are growing in complexity, yet remain vulnerable to a myriad of threats and hazards that damage businesses and threaten the global economy. The list of unforeseen disruptions is exhaustive, ranging from terrorist attacks to natural disasters to corruption to politics—and the list goes on. Supply chain disruptions, delays, and loss of goods are costly global problems, with studies in 2014 showing over $23 billion* lost to cargo theft globally. It just continues to grow.

Following the November 2015 terrorist attacks in Paris, U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano called on the world to launch a combined effort to improve cargo security to protect against attacks that could significantly harm global trade.  According to Napolitano, more solutions and processes are needed in the supply chain to protect against disruption. These include arranging counter-terrorism evaluations, identifying the most critical elements of the supply-chain system, and bolstering resiliency so the supply chain can recover quickly from any disruptions.

Closer to home, the recent attacks in San Bernardino are now driving more screening of supply chain partners, carriers, and employees, the effects of which will resound in every industry. Governments will reach further into importer and exporter information to better understand how goods are moved and which parties are involved. Rather than traditional batch or bulk screening, shipment screening processes will be more dynamic, and at the transaction level. The biggest challenge for shippers in 2016 will be their ability to gather supply chain data more efficiently and faster to keep goods flowing across borders without costly delays.

Because global supply chains stretch across geographies and involve many more players, they create difficult risk management challenges. Most companies see proactive protection of supply chains as a priority, but many are not prepared nor have they any business continuity plans in place with their suppliers in the event of a disruption. Many can’t even identify their key suppliers and 70 percent* say they lack visibility over their entire supply chain. During a disruption, these companies will scramble to find alternative plans, which will be costly, damaging to business reputations, and cause suppliers to lose clients. There needs to be a marked increase in proactive practices, starting with clear continuity plans in case of disruptions.

Implementing Better Cargo Security

Supply chain assessments must begin with identifying any risk that will interrupt the flow of goods from the location where materials are originally sourced to the end product on store shelves. A strong cargo security program should be implemented connecting each and every critical link in a holistic approach. 

This type of program requires, at a minimum, these six critical elements:


Define risks — Companies need to work with their suppliers and providers to determine which risks are most likely to occur within their supply chain, rank them according to those most likely to occur given each unique scenario, and determine which risks carry the most disruption.



Implement risk mitigation “must-haves” — A strong cargo risk mitigation strategy starts with C-level support. Other must-haves including budget and organizational structures to support the program and financial incentives to encourage compliance to policies.



Follow best practices — Cargo risk management strategies should address the best practices of people, processes, and technology.


Develop and manage importer self-audits — At the most basic level, perform regular supplier audits, diagram the supply chain, and profile suppliers according to location, transportation modes, port of shipment, carriers and each supplier’s tier two and tier three supplier network.


Develop corrective action plans — Once risks are identified and ranked, shippers should establish corrective action plans (CAPs) for deficient suppliers and other supply chain issues.


Provide risk mitigation training and remediation — This training, together with a formal, written security manual, should include overall awareness training and follow-up requirements, including in the areas of procedural, personnel, documents and records, and facility security.


By implementing these basics, businesses and their partners will have transparency into their overall risk posture. With a better understanding of their vulnerabilities and programs to manage and correct them, companies will be in a more secure position. If each importer takes these steps within their own network, global threat levels will be lower and world economies stronger. 

Agree or Disagree with Our Expert's Perspective? Let Us Know Your Thoughts at the Feedback section below.

Recent Feedback

 I totally Agree with you!!!

There is one thing which is missing, in my view, and this is the use of cargo monitoring solution.
Contguard is a global cargo monitoring, supply chain and security solution provider that delivers real-time information on containers shipping across the world. Our main benefits:
- Crime and theft prevention
- IP protection
- Prevent terror threat
- prevent direct & indirect unexpected expenditures
- Improve supply chain efficiency & avoid crisis situations.



David Goren
VP Marketing & Sales
Feb, 02 2016

I totally agree with what you identified. Thank you.

Logistics and procurment coordinator
The Fred Hollows Foundation
Feb, 16 2016