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How Ports Are More Secure with Rugged Tablet PCs

When it comes to international commerce, national borders are blurring in some respects as more goods than ever move through points of entry. That’s making ports more vulnerable to security threats. To protect their facilities, progressive port managers are instituting fully integrated security solutions. And they’re deploying rugged tablet PCs throughout their facility to achieve total connectivity. 

To arrive at a well-integrated security system that’s right for your port, you’ll need to follow a three-step process.


rugged tablet pc shipping harbor port bargeYou need to identify all possible types of threats, their potential sources, their ramifications and their likelihood. Then you need to assess your exposure to each threat, identifying current weaknesses or gaps that create vulnerability.

A thorough assessment gives you a complete picture of risks and how best to address them, so you can set priorities regarding what security resources are needed and outline action plans to put those resources into play.


At the very least, your port must comply with current national and international security standards that address physical infrastructure requirements. But you need to consider disaster preparation and recovery, too. Just as with any private enterprise, it’s essential for ports to maintain or quickly recover business continuity – in this case the flow of commerce on which national and local economies are dependent.

A strategically valuable plan has to address the full range of potential security breaches. The port itself could be a direct target, which requires standard types of perimeter protection and access controls such as security fences, guards, identification checkpoints, video surveillance or biometrics.

But there are also “point of entry” threats. Smugglers of drugs, arms, endangered animals or other contraband want to maintain a low profile. Neutralizing these insidious threats requires the ability to target cargo and perform non-intrusive screening to learn what is actually packed inside containers.

Using a rugged tablet PC provides complete visibility and flexibility. Rugged tablets support technology-based security measures and put the means to use them right into the hands of personnel throughout the port. They provide:

  • Real-time data capture and retrieval from anywhere.
  • Wireless voice and data communication.
  • Integrated features such as GPS, bar code or RFID scanning.
  • Military-grade toughness, inside and out.

That adds up to faster, more reliable information to make better decisions. In other words, better security.


Putting your plan into action requires coordinating all the elements involved in port activities – people, cargo and assets as well as the flow of information. They’re all mobile, as work ebbs and flows around the port. Not all terminals are equally busy or on the same schedules, making the portability of a ruggedized tablet PC more powerful than ever.

For ports, risk management – from assessment through deployment of the right solutions – has taken on greater significance and sense of urgency. Mitigating risk requires understanding the full range of possibilities, knowing what’s needed to avert or combat them and applying those resources effectively and cost-effectively. Fully integrated systems are hardest for others to subvert because they’re multi-faceted.

Especially because ports are very large and workers are highly mobile, the visibility and agility provided by ruggedized tablet PC is fundamental for success of any security plan.


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