International C-TPAT (Customs Trade Partnership Against Terrorism) shippers transporting cargo into the United States are required to use ‘high security’ seals per the C-TPAT program of the US Customs and Border Protection (CBP).
These seals must be able to delay and/or make obvious any attempt at unauthorized entry into a trailer or container. These seals typically are steel bolt seals or heavy cable seals. Qualifications these seals must meet have been established, are tested and verified by a hierarchy of organizations and a system that ensures product and manufacturer integrity.
The new international standard driving the C-TPAT shipping community and the global security seal industry is ISO/PAS 17712:2006 Mechanical Seal Standard for Freight Containers. ISO/PAS 17712:2006 guidelines stipulate seals undergo tensile, shear, bending, and impact resistance tests using a standard set of procedures developed by government, industry and association technical committees, subcommittees and working groups.
CBP requires a ‘high security’ seal meet or exceed the results required in each of these mechanical tests in order to earn the ‘high security’ rating per ISO/PAS 17712:2006 performance standards and to meet C-TPAT compliance.
This standard also requires a seal manufacturer to consistently meet three ISO process, quality, and product performance requirements.