Securing a Supply Chain

Read this executive summary and introduction as a guide addressing security, its importance, the major players, logistics requirements, as well as the overall vision.


A supply chain is a system of resources, organizations, people, technologies, activities and information involved in the act of transporting goods from producer to consumer/user.

In the context of globalization, it also refers to the network of supply chains that form today's global commerce.

Threats to the supply chain can come:

  • From outside the supply chain, threatening to disrupt the chain
  • From inside the supply chain, when it is used to perform and cover illegal activities, like contraband, terrorism, or piracy.

Supply chain security (SCS) is the concept which encompasses the programs, systems, procedures, technologies and solutions applied to address threats to the supply chain and the consequent threats to the economic, social and physical well-being of citizens and organized society.

Unless explicitly computer related, the word program in this guide is understood as being a complex, a whole composed of interconnected or interwoven related parts, of integrated and sequenced methods, procedures, systems, rules and regulations applied to segments or components of the supply chain in order to enhance its security.

The programs that, in SCS parlance, are sometimes called "initiatives", may be:

  • Global, regional, national, governmental, sectorial
  • Multilateral, bilateral, unilateral
  • Compulsory, voluntary.

They mostly apply to specific elements, areas, segments, sectors, links or events of the supply chain, or groups thereof. They may require the use of specific technologies or equipments, or sets thereof.