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GAO: CBP Should Standardize Info Tracking Guidance for Supply Chain Security Program

The Government Accountability Office has called on the Customs and Border Protection to develop a standardized guidance for efforts to track security validations under CBP’s supply chain security partnership program.

GAO said Wednesday CBP’s Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism program faced problems with its Portal 2.0 data management system which required C-TPAT staff to manually verify member data.

C-TPAT is a voluntary public-private partnership program under which CBP evaluates member organizations’ supply chain security practices against minimum security criteria in exchange for benefits such as reduced shipment inspections.

GAO noted CBP identified the root causes of Portal 2.0 malfunctions, including unclear requirements and insufficient tests, and outlined recommended actions.

C-TPAT staff told the audit agency they run field office reviews to track and complete security validations despite Portal 2.0 issues.

Auditors said field offices lack standardized guidance from C-TPAT headquarters that could help ensure the consistency and reliability of efforts to track security validation.

GAO’s preliminary analyses also revealed that CBP’s Dashboard data reporting tool cannot accurately provide data on C-TPAT member benefits.

The government watchdog urged CBP to develop a plan to fix the Dashboard to help provide reliable data on C-TPAT member benefits.

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