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Security UPgrade for PORTs

European Union
Complete with results
Geo-spatial type
Infrastructure Node
Total project cost
€14 622 991
EU Contribution
€9 920 607
Project Acronym
STRIA Roadmaps
Infrastructure (INF)
Transport mode
Waterborne icon
Transport policies
Transport sectors
Passenger transport,
Freight transport


Link to CORDIS

Port security remains of paramount importance for Europe both due to potential threats on passenger life and the potential for crippling economic damage arising from intentional unlawful attacks on port facilities. Challenges arise due to the complexity of operational modalities of sea and hinterland traffic and the lack of efficient organisational and technological interfaces linking ports to border control authorities, the police and other intervention forces, and transport-logistics operators. Considerable progress with port security has been achieved in recent years primarily associated with adoption of the International Ship and Port Facility Security (ISPS) Code .

SUPPORT is aimed at building on these achievements by engaging representative stakeholders to guide the development of next generation solutions for upgraded preventive and remedial security capabilities in European ports. The overall benefit will be the secure and efficient operation of European ports enabling uninterrupted flows of cargo and passengers while suppressing illegal immigration and trafficking of drugs, weapons and illicit substances all in line with the efforts of FRONTEX and EU member states. SUPPORT will deliver public formal specifications and open standards based tools that will aid security upgrade in EU ports and will be complementary to and usable by other EU projects and initiatives in this area. Emphasis will be given to bring together advances from research on security with results from the main EU projects in maritime and intermodal transport, specifically those concerned with security and interoperability issues.

Thus, SUPPORT will address ‘total’ port security upgrade solutions encompassing legal, organisational, technology and human factor perspectives. These solutions should provide substantial improvements in the performance, reliability, speed and cost of European port security which will be demonstrated during the course of the project.


Parent Programmes
Institution Type
Public institution
Institution Name
European Commission
Type of funding
Public (EU)


Improving port security

An EU group enhanced existing security systems for port areas. Evaluations of such systems documented good and bad practices, and the project's recommendations for improvement of featured legal, organisational and technological factors.
Ports are extremely important to Europe's economy, handling around 3.5 billion tonnes of freight each year. Security breaches can be very costly, potentially affecting the entire supply chain. However, ports' size and complexity make them difficult to secure.

The EU-funded 'Security upgrade for ports' (SUPPORT) project planned to improve European port security. The consortium aimed to provide security upgrade solutions involving legal, organisational and technological factors. Such factors were intended to support security by improving efficiency plus uninterrupted flow of passengers and cargo, while also suppressing attacks, illegal immigration and drug trafficking. In addition, the group offered improved training for security operators. The 22-member group ran for 4 years to June 2014.

SUPPORT built upon recent security developments, including implementation of the International Ship and Port Facility Security (ISPS) Code. The improvements were accomplished by seeking input from representative stakeholders concerning potential preventative and remedial security actions.

Additionally, the team analysed a variety of existing port security systems. This action yielded lists of good and bad practices seen among port managing organisations, port authorities and other stakeholders, and a set of lessons learned. The project also delivered validated models for port security management and training tools supporting port security upgrades. The deliverables are compatible with other European projects and initiatives, and consistent with security standards.

The consortium conducted considerable dissemination work, including organising three conferences and preparing several information videos.

SUPPORT suggested improvements to security practices in European ports. The resulting systems also offer a large potential worldwide market.


Lead Organisation
EU Contribution
Partner Organisations
EU Contribution


Technology Theme
Infrastructure management
Security sensors for next generation port solutions
Development phase

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