The Cargo Letter

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Air & Ocean Freight Forwarder - Customs Broker News
30 April 2000

Good Sunday Evening from our Observation Deck...... Overlooking the officially designated "Cargo City" area and....... Runway 25-Right, at Los Angeles International Airport, voted "Best Cargo Airport in North America". Sorry, we have no Elian Gonzalez news this month.

To help you find what you need -- FAST -- there's now a transport search engine installed at our website!

The thousands of Forwarders & Brokers who read this publication around the world need to learn of YOUR experiences and what YOU learned today. Contribute your knowledge, stories & company information ........ by e-mail to The Cargo Letter. We strive to bring you useful information which is timely & topical. Be sure to visit our web site.

Michael S. McDaniel, Editor & Publisher, Countryman & McDaniel, forwarder/broker attorneys at LAX

INDEX to The Cargo Letter:

OUR "A" Section: Trade, Financial & Inland News
   1. Freight Forwarder Trade Briefs
   2. The Cargo Letter Financial Page
OUR "B" Section: FF World Air News
   3. Freight Forwarder World Air Briefs
OUR "C" Section:  FF World Ocean News
   4. FF World Ocean Briefs
   5. The Cargo Letter Cargo Damage Dispatches
      * Back By Popular Demand
OUR "D" Section: FF in Cyberspace
   6. The Cargo Letter "Cyber Ports Of Call"
OUR "E" Section: The Forwarder/Broker World
   7. Dotting The "I's & Crossing The "T"s
      * AWBs Under Old Warsaw
      * Plus Montreal Protocol 4
   8. The Risks of DSL Technology For Transport
      * This Was Your Warning

OUR "A" Section: Trade, Financial & Inland News

1. Freight Forwarder Trade Briefs

2. The Cargo Letter Financial Page

OUR "B" Section: FF World Air News

3. Freight Forwarder World Air Briefs

OUR "C" Section: FF World Ocean News

4. FF World Ocean Briefs

5. The Cargo Letter Cargo Damage Dispatches

Below are the "extremely edited" April casualty reports just as we posted them to our web site, just as you would have seen them, day by day when visiting. Space does not allow us to provide you with either the full stories, or even all the stories. Get the full details on line.

At our site you can request to be notified by e-mail whenever there is an incident at sea, or some major transport event. It's automatic! Be up to date! Sign up for our daily reports.

Visit our Vessel Casualties & Pirate Activity Database.

This is only a partial list of casualties for the month in that most dangerous place ....... out there.

The 8 man crew of the 1,219 dwt general cargo ship M/V Gran Rio R are missing, presumed drowned after their 1957-built ship disappeared off Tobago in the Caribbean. Search & rescue missions found no sign of the St Vincent-flag vessel, which is thought to have sunk with all hands. (Sun. April 30 2000)

The M/V American Mariner, wth iron ore pellets, struck a light just north of Port Huron early April 28, tearing a hole in the hull. The freighter blocked 30 ships while stuck in Lake Huron's shipping channel for almost a day. The ship lay across the Huron Cut shipping channel, halting other vessels trying to sail south into the St. Clair River or north into Lake Huron. None of the 26 crew were in danger & remained aboard as the 730-foot-long vessel took on water. The ship used its own pumps & portable pumps from the Coast Guard to remove the water, and about 1:45 a.m. Saturday, the waiting vessels were allowed to begin navigation through the channel. (Sat. April 29 2000)

The Bahamas livestock carrier M/V BADER III (36,387 gross), Egypt for Portland, Australia, had fire in auxiliary generator in lat 28 40S, long 104 09E, Apr 22. Taken in tow by tug Wambiri bound Fremantle, where ETA Apr 30. (Sat. April 29 2000)

The Venezuelan M/V CARMEN FABRIANA (489 gross), cargo of cement, had engine-room fire, which later spread, in lat 11 55N, long 66 30W, Apr 26. Crew evacuated safely. Still burning/drifting in lat 11 09.6N, long 66 59.8W, Apr 27. Tug proceeding. (Fri. April 28 2000)

The ferry M/V Aquitaine crashed into a pontoon while docking at this northern French port city, slightly injuring 38 passengers. The ferry, which had departed Britain from Dover, was carrying 1,241 passengers & 123 crew at the time of the accident, according to a statement released by P&O, which owns the ferry. 38 people had minor injuries, with one person suffering a broken arm. The accident occurred after an engine stalled, preventing the ferry from backing up. The vessel & the pontoon suffered minor damage. (Thus. April 27 2000)

The USCGC Healy, built for traveling through ice-packed polar waters, has started a rare trip through Canada's disputed Northwest Passage. The voyage by the U.S. Coast Guard ship is the 4th by an American-flagged vessel through the passage since Canada & the U.S. signed an Arctic cooperation agreement in 1988. Under the agreement, both countries pledged to work together to help with the navigation of icebreakers & share research. But the question of who controls the icy link between the Arctic & Atlantic Oceans has remained unresolved. The U.S. has never recognized Canada's 1973 claim of the Northwest Passage as an internal Canadian waterway. Before the cooperation agreement, 2 U.S. ships sent without permission -- the oil tanker M/T Manhattan in 1969 & the icebreaker USCGC Polar Sea in 1985 -- caused disputes between the neighboring countries. (Thurs. April 27 2000)

The St.Vincent & Grenadines bulk carrier M/V SEA QUEEN (7,248 gross), broke in two in way of No. 2 hold while loading cement at Mina Saqr Apr 22. (Thurs. April 27 2000)

The Panamanian chemical tanker M/V NIPAYIA (4,750 gross), Tallinn for Europoort, grounded near Buoy 43, near Walsoorden, River Scheldt, while inbound, Apr 25. Tugs on scene & will attempt to refloat on tonight's high tide. (Wed. April 26 2000)

The St.Vincent & Grenadines bulk carrier M/V MINERVA H. , ex M/V Minerva, Norwegian flag, (1,480 gross), Kolding for Skagen with wood, some of which on deck, grounded in lat 56 21N, long 10 57 E, Apr 23. Engine-room flooded. Refloated Apr 24 and towed closer to shore where beached in lat 56 23N, long 10 56E, to prevent sinking. Crew taken off. Surveyors on scene. (Tues. April 25 2000)

PIRATE ALERT >>> Heavily armed pirates have kidnapped 20 people, including 10 foreign tourists, on a tropical resort island off Borneo in eastern Malaysia & headed out to sea. Malaysian officials said they knew where the hostages, including 6 foreign women, were being held & believed they were safe. The Philippines said a Moslem rebel group in the southern Philippines might be responsible. The 6 gunmen arrived in two boats on the evening of April 23 on tiny Sipadan island, a world-renowned diving spot about 20 miles off the scenic coast of Malaysia's Sabah state, & took 22 hostages. Two Americans who were captured, both aged 51, escaped into the woods before the captors ordered the hostages into two boats. The captors left one of their boats on the island & stole one belonging to the resort. There were no reports of demands by the pirates. The hostages are 9 Malaysians, 3 Germans, 2 French, 2 South Africans, 2 Finnish, 1 Lebanese & 1 Filipino working at the Sipadan Island Resort. The 10 foreign tourists include 6 women & 4 men. Philippine Defense Secretary Orlando Mercado said the captors appeared to be Filipino & had sped towards Philippine waters with the hostages. Philippine authorities ordered the navy & air force on alert. Malaysia's Defense Ministry dispatched a patrol boat & a maritime surveillance aircraft. The captors are believed to be carrying AK-47 rifles & the 6th had a bazooka gun when they arrived at the Sipadan Island Resort during dinner on Sunday. They stormed the police station on the island & the local wildlife & forestry office before heading for the resort. (Mon. April 24 2000)

U.S. bulk carrier M/V CALCITE II (8,188 gt, built 1929), loaded with limestone, grounded while departing Port Inland for Cleveland, Ohio, on Apr 19. Vessel was unable to refloat under her own power & she was finally refloated with tug assistance on Apr 20. Tank soundings revealed that she was not taking water. Vessel will proceed Cleveland for internal structural examination. (Mon. April 24 2000)

The Japan 279-ton F/V Daitoku Maru No.7 was apparently fired upon & seized off Japan's northern island of Hokkaido. A Russian border patrol vessel fired on the fishing vessel on Friday & appears to have seized the ship with 20 crew aboard, the Japanese coast guard said. This is the 1st incident of its kind in 3 years & could cast a shadow over next week's initial meeting between Japanese Prime Minister Yoshiro Mori & Russian President Vladimir Putin. Japan Coast Guard has dispatched 4 vessels to the scene to investigate, but has been unable to contact the ship. The incident appeared to have taken place in Int'l waters, rather than in disputed waters around 4 small islands north of Hokkaido. (Fri. April 21 2000)

The Egyptian M/V NEPTUNE PIONEER (1,753 gross) had water ingress into engine-room while adjusting ballast valve during cargo loading operations at Suez Apr 20. Suez Canal tugs alongside to pump water out. (Fri. April 21 2000)

The Panamanian chemical tanker M/T CHEM RUNNER (3,106 gross), Belawan for Tema with palm oil, had main engine problems off Mauritius Apr 6. Towed to Port Louis Apr 10. Repairing Apr 19. Repairs ETC Apr 21. (Thurs. April 20 2000)

The Austrian M/V LECH (4,372 gross) reported drifting with engine trouble in lat 46 24.5N, long 03 43.3W, Apr 17. Tug Suhaili proceeding. ETA on scene Apr 18. (Wed. April 19 2000)

AGAIN IN SAME WEEK For Sister Ship ! >>> The Philippine inter-island ferry M/V VIVA PENAFRANCIA slammed into a fish corral at sea early on April 17, disabling its propeller. The vessel was Mindoro Island for Batangas with 117 passengers & 20 crew, struck a fish coral, listed & sank, 6 nautical miles off Batangas Apr 17. All passengers & crew rescued safely. It was the 2nd sea mishap to occur in the Philippines in 5 days, after at least 138 people drowned & 70 rescued last week when an overloaded ferry capsized off Jolo Island in the So. Philippines. In the latest incident, a sister ship tried to tow the 260-ton Viva Penafrancia to port in nearby Batangas city after its passengers & crew were transferred to a passing vessel but the distressed ferry listed & sank with its cargo of motor vehicles. The Viva Penafrancia struck a fish corral -- a bamboo-made shelter for fish -- in the open sea. The 2 incidents in less than a week further blight the sorry maritime safety record of this archipelagic country of more than 7,000 islands. In 1987, about 4,000 people died in a collision between the ferry M/V Dona Paz & an oil tanker -- the world's worst peacetime sea tragedy. (Mon. April 17 2000)

The St.Vincent & Grenadines M/V SUN BIRD (1,886 gross), for Aruba with gypsum, sank in lat 13 04.5N, long 69 51W, Apr 16. All crew rescued safely. (Mon. April 17 2000)

The South Korean chemical tanker M/T BU IL (997 gross), Ulsan for Shanghai with chemicals, was in collision with tanker M/T Sunyang Chemi 1 off Cheju Island, in about lat 32 37.4N, long 125 39.6E, Apr 14. M/T BU IL capsized & sank. All crew rescued safely. (Sat. April 15 2000)

The Bahamas M/V MILLENIUM YAMA (14,038 gross), Torre Annunziata for Montreal, had main engine breakdown followed by an engine-room fire off Godbout, Baie Comeau, in lat 49 05.48N, long 67 38.30W, Apr 11. Fire quickly extinguished by crew. Towed into Baie Comeau. (Fri. April 14 2000)

The overloaded wooden Philippine ferry M/V Arlahada headed for Malaysia has ca psized & sank, killing at least 56 people. More than 100 others are missing & feared dead. 19 people have been rescued as of April 12 morning. Many passengers were crowded on one side of the Arlahada, causing it to tip & then capsize shortly after leaving Jolo, the provincial capital. The vessel was only authorized to carry cargo, not passengers, said the Coast Guard. It had 9 crew & 11 cargo agents on board when it departed Jolo. (Thurs. April 13 2000) The death toll is now 138. (Sun. April 16 2000)

The Maltese chemical tanker M/T OLAR (4,743 gross) contacted the quay while departing Antwerp Apr 12. Sustained damage to bulbous bow. Returned to Berth 413, Antwerp, after survey. (Thurs. April 13 2000)

The United Kingdom tanker M/T WHITIDE (1,148 gross), Cork for Milford Haven in ballast, reported disabled w/ broken crankshaft off St. Annes Head, in lat 51 40N, long 06 11W, Apr 11. Tug Connor proceeding from Swansea. (Wed. April 12 2000)

The Russia's Pacific Fleet destroyer Burnyi accidentally fired a shell in Vladivostok Harbor on April 10, hitting an anti-submarine ship. Nobody was injured in the incident -- which happened in the Golden Horn Harbor in the center of Vladivostok -- but the superstructure of the anti-submarine vessel Admiral Vinogradov, was damaged. Oh, do you think! The accident happened when routine weapons testing on the destroyer went wrong, a spokesman said. "Today, between 2200 & 2300 GMT on Sunday on the destroyer Burnyi during a planned check of weapons & machinery there was an unsanctioned shot of a dummy shell because of a violation of security procedures." Accidents have become more frequent in Russia's once mighty Pacific Fleet, which as well as most other units of the Russian armed forces, is owed millions of dollars by the state. Both ships involved in the incident were preparing for an official visit to South Korea on April 19. Seoul, take cover! (Tues. April 11 2000)

The Honduran m cement carrier M/V RAYSUT CEMENT I (947 gross) developed a list while loading bulk cement at Pier No.3, Salalah, & subsequently sank Apr 9. Master & all crew reported safe. (Tues. April 11 2000)

Turkish coast guard officials are trying to free 9,068-gross ton Antiguan container ship M/V Jessilena from the shores of the city of Istanbul where it ran aground on April 9. The bow is stuck nearly atop a moored boat restaurant in the suburb of Bebek on the shores of the Bosphorus strait running through the city. Jessilena took on cargo at Istanbul's Haydarpasa port & was bound for the Romanian city of Constanta when its rudder froze, causing the ship to veer shoreward. Turkey's Bosphorus & Dardanelles straits, linked by the Marmara sea, are among the world's busiest shipping lanes and the site of frequent collisions. Turkey opposes the increased traffic, citing danger to Istanbul's more than 10 million inhabitants, but is bound by the 1936 Montreaux Convention to provide free passage to all merchant vessels in peacetime. A Russian-flagged tanker ran aground and split in two in the Marmara sea off Istanbul this past Feb. (Mon. April 10 2000)

The Swedish tanker M/T UNITED ANTON (11,375 gt), bound Rostock with gasoline, grounded off Langeland in the Great Belt on Apr 9. No damage or pollution has been reported. (Mon. April 10 2000)

The Singapore container ship M/V Xpress Makalu slammed against a jetty at Bangladesh's main Chittagong port today. The 125-meter ship sustained damage to its bows when an ebb tide dragged it against a dilapidated jetty. Temporary repairs underway. There were 141 containers aboard. (Sat. April 8 2000)

Sri Lankan rebels destroyed 2 fast-attack navy gunboats in a pitched sea battle against government troops off a strategic causeway that both sides are battling to control, in the waters off Vadamarachchi, 180 miles north of Colombo. The navy vessels caught fire & sank after being hit by rebel artillery fire & the guerrilla naval unit monitored in the northern military-controlled town of Vavuniya. The battle took place near the Elephant Pass causeway, which links the mainland with Jaffna Peninsula. The guerrillas launched a major offensive 2 weeks ago to control a vital bridge in their effort to recapture Jaffna town, their former capital, which was lost to the military in 1996. (Fri. April 7 2000)

Two Royal Engineers were killed & a 3rd injured in an accident during a routine inspection of coal ship M/V Diamond Bulker in Northern Ireland. There was no indication of terrorist involvement or an altercation between the English engineers & the crew of the Philippine-registered vessel, which was carrying a cargo of coal from Colombia. "They were on board the vessel that was being subjected to the search & they met their end in the hold area," an army spokesman said. The 2 engineers, who were working with the Royal Navy, may have been overcome by fumes, hit by shifting cargo or fallen off a ladder during a check of the ship anchored in Lough Foyle in Londonderry late on Wednesday. But he stressed it was too early to tell exactly what happened and that an investigation was underway. One of the dead men was from Plymouth and the other from Bristol. Their ages were given as 31 & 23 but their names were being withheld until relatives were notified. The injured man was in stable condition in hospital. (Fri. April 7 2000)

M/V FENSFJORD (1,000 gt, built 1980) was drifting in lat 52 45.12N. long 03 51.9E, Apr 4, owing to main engine failure at 2130, UTC. M/V Cincobulk made 3 attempts to get a line on board the casualty, but to no avail. At 0100, UTC, Apr 5 Fensfjord reported making water. Helicopter proceeding to pick up crew. (Thurs. April 6 2000)

M/V VICTOR (2,740 gt, built 1968) reported leakage of water into her engine-room in lat 48N, long 06W, at 1900, local time, Apr 3. She was taken in tow by the tug Abeille Flandre & was expected to arrive in Brest at midnight Apr 4. (Wed. April 5 2000)

The Finnish roll-on roll-off ferry M/V FINNFELLOW (14,297 gt), bound Naantali with 58 passengers, grounded on Overo Island, in lat 60 06.82N, long 20 30.4E, on April 2. Salvage operations under way. (Tues. April 4 2000)

Ro-ro M/V DART 2 (9.080 gt, built 1985) was in collision with dredger/sand carrier CITY OF WESTMINSTER (3,914 gt, built 1990) in lat 30.28N, long 00 31.59E on April 2 after City of Westminster had steering problems. Both vessels damaged. City of Westminster proceeding to Chatham docks with hole above waterline. Dart 2 berthed at Dartford. (Mon. April 3 2000)

A lone French oarsman abandoned his attempt today to row across the Pacific Ocean after doctors sent to give him medical supplies found traces of gangrene in both his feet. Jo Le Guen, who set off Feb. 3 from New Zealand's capital, Wellington, on his 5,580 mile voyage, aiming for Cape Horn, Chile, was taken on board an unidentified container ship with just 1/3 of his trip completed. Le Guen, 52, was found by doctors to be suffering septicemia, or blood poisoning, & had the beginnings of gangrene in his feet. He was delirious & too tired to speak. His boat, designated S/V Keep It Blue, boasted electronics powered by batteries charged via solar panels & 2 generating windmills, as well as high-tech navigation & communications equipment. Le Guen carried 3 sets of 9-foot oars, dried food for the duration of the journey, fresh water & 2 water purifiers capable of extracting salt from sea water. Le Guen had estimated it would take 3.5 months of rowing to reach his destination. No stranger to open ocean crossings, the father of 5 has twice rowed the Atlantic. On one trip he went solo & on the other he was in a 2 man team. Our industry is sorry that your proven ability failed to reach the goal this time. (Mon. April 3 2000)

Toxic gases are thought to have been the cause of the deaths of 3 crewmembers on board the Italian-flag products tanker M/T Alderamine in the Atlantic. It is thought that the gas leak occurred during routine maintenance work as the 30,572 dwt ship headed for Spain in ballast from the U.S. The exact cause of the accident is not yet known. (April 1 2000)

The 551 gross ton Turkish-registered M/V Huseyin Avci & the 27,031 gross ton Lebanese-flagged dry cargo M/V Poylak collided on April 1 in the Black Sea near Turkey's busy Bosphorus Strait. There were no casualties & both ships remained afloat despite sustaining damage. The strait remained open to traffic. The Poylak was traveling ballast from Greece's Piraeus port to the Ukrainian port of Berdyansk on the Black Sea. The Huseyin Avci, was carrying minerals, but destination not stated. The 2 ships were held for investigation. Turkey's Bosphorus & Dardanelles straits linking the Mediterranean and Black seas are among the world's busiest & most dangerous shipping lanes. (Sat. April 1 2000)

NOTE: The historic dangers of carriage by sea continue to be quite real. Shi ppers must be encouraged to purchase high quality marine cargo insurance from their freight forwarder or customs broker. It's dangerous out there.

OUR "D" Section: FF in Cyberspace

6. The Cargo Letter "Cyber Ports Of Call"

E-commerce for Freight Transportation Conference & Exhibition ......... as Las Vegas is the setting for the 2nd annual event to be held on June 14-16, 2000.

Expert Tips To Outwit Cargo Thieves

Container Ships For The 21st Century

Malacca-max ........ the ultimate container vessel.

The Big List of Maritime Portals.

Global Tracker II ........Internet Shipment Tracking System thin client version. Thin client makes it possible accessing Global Tracker II database from anywhere around the globe with just a web browser. ...... you'll look, just because.

myCustoms ......... an online, real-time, fully automated customs transaction system (FACTS).

CargoPam ........ aviation consulting & art gallery.

Navy Relics

Hutchison Port Holdings ......... has established an e-commerce business. The Hong Kong terminal handler.

Tugboat Home ..........every week a new picture and description of a tugboat.

E-Mail At Sea ....... the books. ......... a new B2B that brings shippers and their trusted transport providers together to conduct business faster & more efficiently.

Ports 'n Portals ........will deliver a range of e-commerce service products for marine procurement, freight forwarding & cargo processing. One of these services is Arena, an Internet-enabled electronic infrastructure for the global business-to-business procurement of goods & supply chain management.

Cathay Pacific Airways ........ real time flight information.

ABF Freight System .......... the LTL carrier says it has made significant enhancements to "eCenter", its suite of Internet-based transportation tools, & offers a US$25 bribe to customers who try the features before June 30, 2000.

Eighth Int'l Conference on Marine Engineering Systems ........... May 22-23, 2000, U.S. Merchant Marine Academy, Kings Point, NY

Sports The Humor Network, offers subscribers a daily dose of online sports humor as well as a look at "lowlights" from the world of sports delivered directly to their computer screen.

Just Say "Dance" ....... still another way to make enemies at the office. Sound card required to truly annoy.

OUR "E" Section: The Forwarder/Broker World

7. Dotting The "I's & Crossing The "T"s

-- By Rob Conway, Esq. for The Cargo Letter

Sydney - 27 April -- The Court of Appeal of the Supreme Court of New South Wales has recently considered the particulars required by Article 8 of the original Warsaw Convention. This decision will be of interest to all Int'l forwarders. Below is an Internet link to the entire decision in our recent High Court of Australia case of Emery Air Freight Corporation Vs. Merck Sharpe & Dohme (Australia) Pty Ltd & Anor.

The case is at this stage an unreported, but a decision handed down on 19 Nov. 1999. Merck has filed an application for special leave to the High Court of Australia, which is equivalent to seeking a writ of certiorari in the United States Supreme Court.

The decision contains a very useful analysis of the role of freight forwarders & their status in shipments of goods by air. Given that the air waybill in question was subject to the unamended Warsaw Convention of 1929, the case was largely dealt with & was decided in accordance with decisions of the courts of the United States. The Australian Court of Appeal unanimously agreed that in interpreting the requirements of Article 8, preference was to be given to substance over form. Implicit in this attitude is a recognition of the commercial & practical realities of the activities and operations of freight forwarders & airline operators.

Article 8(b) - The Place of Departure: The majority distinguished quite clearly between a place of departure, from which the contractual carriage begins, & the airport of departure, from which the actual air carriage begins and noted that the latter did not necessarily satisfy Article 8(b). Only the dissenting judgment of Fitzgerald JA required the place of departure to be the place of departure of the aircraft carrying the consignment. However, in my view, if this is correct, the necessity and operation of several articles of the Convention would be obviated, for example Article 18(3).

Article 8(c) - The Agreed Stopping Places: The Court of Appeal affirmed the decision of the Court at First Instance with respect to Article 8(c) and in doing so followed considerable U.S. authority that incorporation by reference to a scheduled flight or timetable is sufficient. Again the Court of Appeal took a pragmatic view of the commercial realities of forwarding and the nature and significance of the air waybill. The Court of Appeal also held that the definition of "arrêts prevus" was not a reference to "agreed" but rather "contemplated" stopping places. This may be of some assistance in the future because it will allow a forwarder or airline to argue that there were no contemplated stopping places because it had reserved the right, in its terms & conditions, to determine & vary the routing in accordance with a recent decision of the Court of Appeal of the U.S. District Court for the Ninth Circuit.

Article 8(e) - The Name and Address of the First Carrier: In line with the views expressed by the majority on the operations of a freight forwarder & the role of forwarders in the carriage of goods by air, the Court held that Emery was the 1st carrier & followed considerable U.S. authority in so doing, including Martin Marietta Corp. v Harper Group and Brink's Ltd v South African Airways. Merck was also faced with the curious dilemma, namely that they sued Emery as the 1st and last carrier and this meant that their submissions with respect to Article 8(e) were somewhat inconsistent.

Please do not hesitate to contact me should you wish to discuss this decision. The decision can also be accessed on the Internet:

Special Editor's Note: All this quite well said by our Sydney colleague, NONE THE ABOVE LEGAL CONSIDERATIONS APPLY where both the origin & destination country have adopted Montreal Protocol 4. The Cargo Letter has prepared an in depth review of Montreal Protocol and a set of training tools for your staff at:

8. The Risks of DSL Technology For Transport

-- by Michael S. McDaniel for The Cargo Letter

Now that the cost of a "Digital Subscriber Line" (DSL) for Internet access has dropped in price, small & medium size transportation companies are signing up for this new technology by the hundreds of thousands. Most users are so eager to start using the Web 100 times faster than a 56.6K modem -- that no time is spent considering the security risks involved. Indeed, there are risks.

While dial-up Internet users are either online or off, DSL features a full time 24 Hr. & 7 Day Internet connection.

In a sense, an electronic door to your company is always open to the world.

The same thing may be said for older full time connection technologies such as ISDN or T-1, but due to the expense, these technologies have typically been used by large corporations with a trained information security staff. Because the small to medium size concerns now flocking to DSL usually have no such security personnel & procedures, their information will be at risk to hackers, or even competitors.

Many hackers utilize software which electronically scans all possible Internet addresses to determine which are in use at that time. Once an active address is located, the hacker enters the address to see what's inside or what mischief might be caused.

It is practically a mathematical certainty that your DSL connection will be found by some hacker, sooner or later. On the other hand, some determined visitors, such as a competitor, might take a more direct approach.

Fortunately, the experts tell us that protecting against this risk is a fairly straightforward matter. For a PC running Windows 98, there are two steps for protection:

First Step: Remove the easiest entry to your computer by turning off file & printer sharing. If you are using the peer-to-peer networking capabilities of Windows 98, ignore this step and leave sharing turned on.

Second Step: Install a low cost hardware or software fire wall to keep hackers out. BlackICE Defender, a $39.95 software product from Network ICE Corp. is a good buy.

To learn more about DSL.

Written from wire stories, the Associated Press, Reuters, Hong Kong Shipping News Lloyds & other world sources.

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