Last month, the TAPA World Wide Change Control Board (WWCCB) met in Europe to complete their review of change requests submitted by the Association’s global members for the 2017 versions of TAPA’s Security Standards.

This was the culmination of four months of web meetings and conference calls to discuss the 171 change requests from members to the TAPA Facility Security Requirements (FSR) and Trucking Security Requirements (TSR). In each case, any changes had to meet the criteria previously set for the next version of the Standards, which will come into force on 1 February 2017:

  • Changes must mitigate new or emerging criminal threats, which should be supported by data analysis
  • Changes must be cost neutral or identify opportunities for cost savings

Other objectives included removing redundant requirements, simplifying overly complex requirements, and reformatting the layout to improve access to content.

So what are the key changes TAPA members can expect to see in the 2017 FSR and TSR Standards? Vigilant asked Paul Linders, WWCCB Lead, for the main headlines:

High Value Cage (HVC)

Some 18 change requests were submitted asking TAPA to find a solution to members’ recommendations that HV cages are not always needed. Currently, they are a mandatory requirement. Having considered

the points raised, the WWCCB has decided to establish a clear waiver process for not having an HV cage. To receive a waiver, the company concerned must prove that their operation is compliant with specific criteria:

  • LSP must sign this waiver;
  • LSP must conduct a simple risk assessment and attach it to the waiver form;
  • Certification will show it is given with a waiver so buyers will be aware.

They also must prove the following:

  • Cage not required by buyer(s);
  • Mitigating controls exist (additional security) that ensure goods are not at risk of theft;
  • Solution is in place to protect vulnerable goods when shipping is delayed;
  • Subject to review if the use of the facility changes.

TAPA Air Cargo Security Standards (TACSS)

We were asked to consider if we need TACSS given TAPA’s strong FSR Standard as well as government regulations covering aviation security as regards the movement of air cargo. The WWCCB has concluded TACSS will no longer be a TAPA Security Standard in 2017. All TACSS certified facilities will be recertified to FSR when applicable. This decision provides more clarity between TAPA’s objectives of preventing theft within the supply chain and the national aviation security regimes imposed by governments designed to combat the risk of terrorism.


TAPA uses many definitions and guidelines in its Standards and training programmes. WWCCB has agreed to review the present definitions to make them clearer and in sync across the TAPA Standards. The guidelines used in TAPA training courses will be totally refreshed, based on the new Standards, and added to the Standards as well because this is where they belong. The multiple acronyms used in FSR and TSR will be clearly explained with definitions in the 2017 Standards for the benefit of members working with FSR or TSR for the first time.

Reformatting the FSR and TSR Standards

The set-up and layout of the FSR and TSR Standards will be improved:

  • Content will be presented in a more logical flow by area of concern. For example, all requirements for the warehouse perimeter will now be placed together.
  • Any areas of duplication will be removed
  • The content will be more auditor-friendly

TTSP certification

The number of trucks that must be audited to become a TAPA TSR Service Partner (TTSP) will be reduced to a minimum of 3 and a maximum of 10 trucks. This will increase the opportunities for more trucking companies to become a TTSP and ultimately increase the number of TSR certified trucks.

What’s next?

The next steps will see the WWCCB working to adopt all approved requests and changes in the new requirements and begin updating the audit forms. The Board’s objective is to roll out draft versions of FSR and TSR 2017 at the end of April 2016. Once this is done, and even though the change request period has closed, all members will be invited to review the new draft Security Standards to ensure clarity.

Site Testing: After the review of the final drafts, TAPA will commence site testing at volunteer companies’ sites to determine how the changes improve operations and confirm that the changes are reasonable for ‘real world’ application. Volunteer companies are being sought to participate in site testing. Ideally, TAPA wishes to conduct 6-10 tests in each of its EMEA, Americas and APAC regions.

Updating of Training Materials:  All of the training materials will be updated to include presentation slides, forms and exams.

I want to take this opportunity to thank all of our members who have reviewed the current TAPA Standards and contributed to what we see as clear improvements in the next versions of FSR and TSR. The WWCCB meetings have sometimes been challenging but now all of the regions are fully aligned with the changes we are adopting. I also wish to thank the team working behind the scenes to help us complete this long and detailed process. Unless you are closely involved in this, it is hard to appreciate the amount of time and commitment required.

My personal thanks go to the regional Standards working groups, Simon Martin, our Standards Secretariat, and our regional Boards of Directors. I specifically wish to acknowledge the WWCCB members for their outstanding support and hard work and introduce you to the team pictured above at our recent meeting in Europe.