226_National_Business_Continuity_Plan_for_Import_Cargo_Systems

Document Sample
226_National_Business_Continuity_Plan_for_Import_Cargo_Systems Powered By Docstoc
					   National Business
Continuity Plan for Import
     Cargo Systems
     Australian Quarantine Inspection Service
                     (AQIS)
                                       June 2011




This document communicates a set of national principles for contingency arrangements in
the event of a system outage that affects the clearance of imported cargo.
    Australian Quarantine Inspection
                Service
     National Business Continuity
    Plan for Import Cargo Systems
                                                               CONTENT


1   PURPOSE ....................................................................................................... 4
2   SCOPE ............................................................................................................ 4
3   OUT OF SCOPE .............................................................................................. 4
4   INTENDED AUDIENCE ................................................................................... 4
5   NORMAL BUSINESS PROCESSES............................................................... 5
6   ROLES AND RESPONSIBILITIES.................................................................. 5
    6.1 AQIS ................................................................................................................................................. 5

    6.2 Customs .............................................................................................................................. 5

    6.3 Industry ............................................................................................................................... 6
7   KEY OUTAGES AND THEIR IMPACT............................................................ 7
    7.1 Cargo Control Application Failures and their Impact .................................................... 7

    7.2 Support System Failures ................................................................................................... 9

    7.3 Client System Outage ........................................................................................................ 9
8   AQIS OUTAGE PHASES FOR CARGO CONTROL APPLICATIONS ........... 9
9   NOTIFICATION OF OUTAGE PHASES AND TYPES TO STAKEHOLDERS
    ....................................................................................................................... 13
    9.1 Formal and Timely Notification to Industry ................................................................... 13

    9.2 Timely Notification of AQIS Outages to Customs ........................................................ 13




                                                                                                                                                             2
10   PRIORITY OF CLEARANCE ........................................................................ 14
     10.1 Priority Table ................................................................................................................... 14

     10.2 System of Escalation for Industry Requests ............................................................... 15

     10.3 Urgent Customs Clearance..................................................................................................... 15
11   OUTAGE ESCALATION AND MANAGEMENT IN THE EVENT OF AN
     EXTENDED OUTAGE (PHASE 2 DISASTER) ............................................. 15
12   TERMS .......................................................................................................... 16
13   RELATED DOCUMENTS .............................................................................. 17




                                                                                                                                             3
1 Purpose
The Australian Quarantine and Inspection Service (AQIS) National Business Continuity Plan
(BCP) for Import Cargo Systems sets out a framework providing guidance on all electronic
business continuity issues affecting the import cargo clearance process. This plan includes
an evaluation of, and response to, the unavailability of the Australian Customs and Border
Protection Service (Customs) Integrated Cargo System (ICS) and internal AQIS Information
and Communications Technology (ICT) systems.


2 Scope
This document outlines:
      the key system outages that may occur and affect imported cargo;
      the impact of these outages on AQIS import cargo business activities;
      the roles and responsibilities of AQIS, Customs and Industry during electronic system
       outages;
      AQIS national communication strategy with Industry and other stakeholders under
       contingency;
      expected operating arrangements under various phases of contingency including
       timeframes for the escalation of contingency activities; and
      the priority for clearance of specified cargo under contingency.


3 Out of Scope
This document does not consider:
      system outages that may impact upon AQIS business other than cargo imports;
      the impacts of physical and environmental disasters which may affect import cargo
       business activities such as damages to the building; or
      business disruption including an influenza pandemic which may impact on AQIS
       resources.

Arrangements for managing other contingency scenarios are addressed in the Department of
Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry (DAFF) BCP documentation.


4 Intended Audience
This document is intended for publication on the DAFF website primarily for use by AQIS
staff, Customs and Industry.




                                                                                           4
5 Normal Business Processes
Industry is required to report all goods, aircraft, vessels and shipping containers moving in-
transit or crossing Australia’s borders to the ICS, the ICT system owned and maintained by
Customs. AQIS maintains import cargo profiles and community protection measures in the
ICS to identify imports that may pose a quarantine or food safety risk. When AQIS risk
criteria match then, depending on the type of declaration or report lodged, either the ICS
transmits the data to AQIS cargo clearance systems automatically or an AQIS officer can
elect to do so.

In the case of air cargo reports, AQIS officers conduct an initial risk assessment in the ICS to
determine whether a report needs to be referred to AQIS Self Assessed Clearance (SAC)
database for further processing. Similarly, AQIS requests ICS for cargo reports and cargo
lists for the clearance of cargo from high risk countries identified in the AQIS Country Action
List (CAL) for processing to S-Cargo. The ICS automatically sends Full Import Declarations
(FIDs) and Full Declaration Format SACs that match AQIS profiles to the AQIS Import
Management System (AIMS).

AQIS officers use cargo clearance systems to request documents, direct goods for
inspection and/or treatment and apply other various actions to ensure that cargo meets
Australia’s Quarantine and Imported Foods requirements. AQIS systems transmit
information including AQIS clearance status, regarding these actions to the importing
community via the ICS.


6 Roles and Responsibilities
6.1 AQIS
   The following business continuity framework will guide AQIS risk assessment and
   reporting and clearance processes for imported cargo in the event of a critical outage:
          AQIS will reassign resources as required to facilitate the movement of cargo.
          If necessary, to gain access to the ICS or the ICS BCP Database AQIS will co-
           locate staff with Customs or another government agency.
          AQIS will have measures in place to risk assess imports, even if electronic
           communication is not available.
          AQIS may prioritise imports processed in accordance with the type of clearance
           required and the nature of the goods involved (see Section 10, Priority of
           Clearance).
          AQIS will have measures in place to support continued cost recovery for its import
           clearance activities.


6.2 Customs
The Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between AQIS and Customs, Ref No
2008/14205, ‘In relation to access and use of the Integrated Cargo System (ICS) and BCP
Contingency Database’, underpins the arrangements between the organisations regarding
the ICS and the ICS BCP Database.




                                                                                                 5
             6.2.1 The Customs Information and Support Centre (CI&SC) and
                   ICS Business Support
  ICS contingency management is coordinated through the CI&SC in Sydney and ICS
  Business Support in Canberra and is performed on behalf of AQIS and Customs. ICS
  Business Support are responsible for notifying AQIS and Customs when they are
  preparing to process contingency transactions, whether due to an ICS outage, Industry
  system failure or ad-hoc requirement.

  The CI&SC roles include:

            overall management of ICS contingency scenarios;
            notification to Industry and government agencies (including AQIS) on
             contingency management and scenarios;
            assisting Industry in populating and submitting electronic contingency
             transactions;
            processing contingency transactions through the ICS BCP Database;
            liaising with AQIS and Customs regional BCP coordinators on all BCP
             matters, particularly those identified during a contingency scenario; and
            audit responsibility for Industry reconciliation of contingency transactions in
             the ICS.


             6.2.2 Ensuring the ICS BCP Database addresses AQIS
                   Requirements

     In the event of Customs declaring a contingency, AQIS relies on the ICS BCP
     Database to process data according to AQIS requirements. In order to achieve this,
     Customs will:
            regularly upload AQIS profiles to the database;
            notify AQIS of changes to the database; and
            conduct regular testing of the database with AQIS.


             6.2.3 Access to Premises and Resources

     Where AQIS is experiencing difficulty in accessing the ICS or the ICS BCP Database
     using its own resources, Customs will make all reasonable efforts to allow security
     cleared AQIS Officers to access Customs premises and resources to facilitate AQIS
     access to the ICS or the ICS BCP Database.


6.3 Industry
  AQIS has the following expectations of Industry under contingency:
         1. Industry will refer to the Industry Guidelines for Import Cargo System Outages,
            available at www.daff.gov.au/aqis/import/cargo and submit documents to
            AQIS as required in a contingency situation.




                                                                                               6
           2. In the event of an ICS outage, Industry will refer to the Customs ICS Business
              Continuity Plan (Customs ICS BCP), available at
              http://www.cargosupport.gov.au/site/icsBusContinuity.asp for Customs BCP
              arrangements and comply with Customs requirements. This includes the
              lodgement of documents electronically upon recovery of the ICS.
           3. Industry will comply with particular undertakings AQIS may require in
              authorising the movement of higher risk goods (see Section 10, Priority of
              Clearance).
           4. Copies of AQIS contingency directions or releases issued during a
              contingency period must be kept with the relevant consignment paperwork in
              accordance with usual government document storage requirements.


7 Key Outages and their Impact
Electronic outages can occur for a number of reasons, have a local, regional or nationwide
impact and affect one or a combination of systems. The most serious outages are those
affecting cargo control applications:
             ICS
             AIMS
             SAC
             S-Cargo

The major impacts of individual system failures are outlined below.



7.1 Cargo Control Application Failures and their Impact

              7.1.1 The ICS
   An ICS outage would have the greatest impact on the movement of cargo. Prior to
   Customs declaring BCP and processing via the ICS BCP Database, AQIS can only
   provide clearance to high priority goods manually. After Customs declares BCP and
   Industry begins submitting documents electronically to the ICS BCP Database, AQIS will
   risk assess import cargo through an alternative web-based system, assuming it is
   available.

   If the alternative system is not available then AQIS will investigate co-location options
   with Customs.

              7.1.2 ICS Link to AQIS Systems
   Messaging between the ICS and AIMS and/or SAC can be disrupted. When this occurs,
   import declarations cannot be sent from the ICS to AQIS systems for processing and
   status updates and requests for documentation will not be transmitted back to the ICS.
   Consequently, AQIS would have to adopt the contingency arrangements outlined below:


              7.1.2.1 AIMS
              FIDs and Full Declaration Format SACs already in AIMS can still be
              processed. However, the status updates will not be transmitted to the ICS.
              While AQIS officers can update the status manually in the ICS, this is time-




                                                                                               7
                      consuming. Therefore ICS status updates for processed AIMS entries or for
                      entries not in AIMS will only be actioned for high priority goods (see Section
                      10, Priority of Clearance).


                      7.1.2.2 SAC
                      Cargo Report SACs and Short Form SACs already in the SAC system can still
                      be processed. However, the status updates will not be transmitted to the ICS.
                      While AQIS officers could continue screening air cargo in the ICS any
                      intervention would be manual and be time consuming. Therefore ICS status
                      updates for already processed SACs will only be actioned for high priority
                      goods.


                      7.1.3 AIMS
            AIMS outages can affect AQIS at the regional or national level. In the event of a
            national outage, AQIS officers would have to revert to manual based processing.
            AQIS officers will perform manual updates in the ICS for high priority goods only.

            A regional outage of AIMS would usually affect only that region. AQIS processing
            would either be paper based or, in some instances could be picked up by another
            region. Automatic Entry Processing (AEP) for that region will not be functional
            however, upon system restoration AEP entries will be processed automatically by
            AIMS and directions issued accordingly.

                      7.1.4 SAC Database
            In the event of a SAC database outage, initial air cargo screening would proceed as
            usual in the ICS. AQIS officers will perform manual updates in the ICS for high priority
            goods only.

                      7.1.5 Imported cargo from countries on the AQIS Country Action
                            List (CAL) - related Cargo System Failures
            There are three main outages that would affect AQIS ability to risk-assess sea cargo
            from countries originating from countries listed on the AQIS CAL1: the ICS, S-Cargo
            and the link between the ICS and S-Cargo.


                      7.1.5.1 ICS
                   In the event of a short-term ICS outage, S-Cargo will still be used to release
                   cargo and messages will queue in the ICS until the outage has been resolved.

                   In the case of long term ICS outages, officers will rely on electronic bayplans
                   and load port information to assess risk vessels and cargo originating from
                   countries listed on the CAL. Notification will be sent as required to the
                   appropriate stevedores advising them of cargo to be held and pending
                   inspection.




1
    Countries on the AQIS CAL can be found on the AQIS Website: http://www.daff.gov.au/aqis/import/cargo/pests/cal




                                                                                                                     8
              7.1.5.2 S-Cargo or ICS/S-Cargo Link Down
             AQIS Officers will remove holds in the ICS manually.


              7.1.5.3 Both ICS and S-Cargo Down
             The process is the same as that for a long-term ICS outage.


7.2 Support System Failures
   AQIS uses other electronic systems such as email, ICON, eResults and ePermits to
   support import cargo clearance activities. However, while an outage of these support
   systems could impact cargo processing, the effect may not be as immediate or serious as
   an outage affecting cargo control applications. For example, if eResults (used for
   Imported Foods) was unavailable, laboratories would be requested to submit their
   registration of samples and test results via fax or email to regional processing staff to
   have the registration/test results manually processed. A more serious example would be
   if AQIS experienced a Central Office email outage, as Industry would no longer be able to
   supply requested documents electronically. In this case, documents would need to be
   faxed directly to Central or Regional Offices’ or manually submitted via Regional front
   counters.
7.3 Client System Outage
   Due to the high volume of cargo affected if a large client’s software fails, Customs may
   agree to the client submitting information electronically to the ICS BCP Database. Should
   this occur then, in addition to regular screening in the ICS AQIS officers would screen the
   affected client’s cargo in the ICS BCP Database. As there is no link between AIMS and
   the ICS BCP Database, AQIS officers would have to raise manual entries in AIMS for
   consignments they assess as posing a quarantine risk. This process would slow AQIS
   ability to process cargo. This contingency screening would be prioritised according to
   AQIS other obligations.


8 AQIS Outage Phases for Cargo Control
  Applications
AQIS outage phases for critical cargo applications are:
    the Evaluation Phase;
    BCP Phase 1 (Critical); and
    BCP Phase 2 (Disaster).

AQIS outage phases for critical cargo control applications are outlined in Diagram 1 and
Table 1 below. While these show estimated timelines for entering each phase, these
timelines are guidelines only. For example, based on the information at hand BCP Phase 1
(Critical) may be declared very quickly. Similarly, the decision to move from BCP Phase 1
(Critical) arrangements to BCP Phase 2 (Disaster) arrangements will not be based on the
length of an outage but rather on AQIS ability to manage in the outage environment and
assessment of the outage situation.




                                                                                             9
Please note that as the AQIS outage phases apply to all critical cargo applications, they are
not a direct reflection of the ICS contingency phases2. However, in the case of an ICS outage
AQIS operation arrangements will be linked to the Customs ICS phases. For example, AQIS
cannot begin processing FIDs in the ICS BCP Database until Customs enters its own Phase
3 and begins accepting them. Similarly, should Customs invoke their BCP AQIS will notify
industry that the AQIS BCP is being invoked.




2
  Contingency phases associated with an ICS outage are outlined in detail in the Customs ICS BCP available at
http://www.cargosupport.gov.au/site/icsBusContinuity.asp.




                                                                                                                10
11
Table 1 gives estimated timeframes for entering each phase, describes what happens during
that phase and outlines AQIS communications strategy.

Table 1:       AQIS Outage Phases for National Import Cargo System Outages

        Phase                Description

 Evaluation Phase     Identification of the system outage, whether a Customs or an
 0 – 6 hours          AQIS outage.
                      AQIS determines what initial action is required. For example,
                      manual processing and booking of urgent freight.

 BCP Phase 1          AQIS implements full contingency arrangements, whether for an
 (Critical Outage):   AIMS and/or an ICS outage.
 declared 1.5 - 24
                      The National System Administrator makes all technical
 hours from initial
                      communications regarding the outage, while the National Cargo
 outage detection
                      BCP Coordinator undertakes the notification role for contingency
                      arrangements and helps coordinate activities as required.

 BCP Phase 2          In the event of an extended outage, the Executive Manager,
 (Disaster):          Quarantine Operations Division, will make a decision to escalate
 declared 24 - 48     the issue to the Deputy Secretary and Secretary in order to
 hours from initial   initiate the Department’s BCP. See Section 11.
 outage detection


Table 2:       AQIS Outage Phases for Regional Import Cargo System Outages

        Phase                Description

 Evaluation Phase     Identification of the AQIS system outage.
 0 – 6 hours
                      AQIS determines what initial action is required. For example,
                      manual processing and booking of urgent freight.
 BCP Phase 1          AQIS implements full contingency arrangements.
 (Critical Outage):
                      The National System Administrator makes all technical
 declared 1.5 - 24
                      communications regarding the outage, while the Regional Cargo
 hours from initial
                      BCP Coordinator undertakes the notification role for contingency
 outage detection
                      arrangements and helps coordinate activities as required.

 BCP Phase 2          The Regional BCP is initiated and additional long term measures
 (Disaster):          may be implemented. The Regional Manager may escalate the
 declared 24 - 48     issue to the Executive Manager to initiate the Department’s
 hours from initial   National BCP. See Section 11.
 outage detection




                                                                                         12
9 Notification of Outage Phases and Types to
  Stakeholders
9.1 Formal and Timely Notification to Industry
       In the event of an AQIS critical cargo clearance application failure, or if the messaging
       link between the Customs and AQIS systems is down for an extended period AQIS will
       issue a notification regarding the outage:
                 via AQIS Notices published on the AQIS website
                  http://www.daff.gov.au/aqis/import/general-info/ian and displayed in AQIS regional
                  offices;
                 via the Customs website when the issue is ICS-related
                  http://news.customs.gov.au/RSS_news_feed.asp?CAT=1;
                 to Industry representative bodies; or
                 via Industry Notification Tools such as SMS, RSS feeds and subscription
                  capabilities on the AQIS website3.

       The notification will include:
          1. the reason for the outage (where known);
          2. the expected duration of the outage (where known); and
          3. actions available to Industry.

       AQIS Regional offices can also be contacted for information. Their contact details are
       available at the following location: http://www.daff.gov.au/aqis/about/contact/aims

       AQIS will advise Industry by the same methods when:
          1. outage phases change or AQIS BCP is declared;
          2. there is a significant change to contingency management; or
          3. the system outage is resolved.

       When the relevant system outage has been rectified, Brokers/Importers will be advised of
       arrangements to resume normal entry processing. Notification will include AQIS entry
       processing requirements for any transition period between the contingency requirements
       and normal entry processing.


9.2 Timely Notification of AQIS Outages to Customs

       AQIS will notify Customs of any significant outages according to guidelines agreed to by
       the BCP contacts of each organisation. AQIS will also advise Customs when:
            1. outage phases change or AQIS BCP is declared; or
            2. the system outage is resolved.



3
    AQIS is currently in the process of making these tools available.




                                                                                                   13
10 Priority of Clearance
10.1 Priority Table
   In the event that AQIS is required to prioritise cargo for contingency release, prioritisation
   will occur as per Table 3, Priority of Clearance.

Table 3:      Priority of Clearance
 Priority   Type of Cargo                                Explanation

    1.      Live Animals, such as                        Require rapid clearance to
                 fish                                   limit suffering of live animals.
                 dogs
                 cats
                 horses.

            Genetic Material, such as semen and          Require rapid clearance to
            embryos.                                     ensure the specimen viability.

            Urgent medical/emergency freight,            To facilitate community
            such as:                                     protection, natural disasters
                blood or medication                     and medical emergencies.
                fire fighting helicopters               Freighted on an “as needs”
                medical equipment.                      basis with goods requiring
                                                         processing faster than the 24
                                                         hour service charter.

            Hazardous materials.                         Impeding movement of this
                                                         cargo may present an
                                                         unacceptable risk.

    2.      Perishable air freight, such as              Goods may be damaged;
                live plants                             Cargo Terminal Operators
                fruit                                   (CTOs) may not have the
                vegetables                              appropriate facilities to keep
                chilled finfish.                        goods chilled.

    3.      Bulk vessels.                                Wharf availability timeframes
                                                         may be critical and require
                                                         vessels to be unloaded.

    4.      Perishable sea freight, where goods          Goods usually arrive in reefers
            have or are about to arrive in Australia.    and are therefore chilled,
                                                         priority to be determined on
                                                         case by case basis.

    5.      Previously assessed freight.                 Documents already assessed,
                                                         assisting with the movement of
                                                         cargo.




                                                                                              14
10.2 System of Escalation for Industry Requests
   Industry requests that are outside of or lower down on the priority list will be assessed
   by quarantine officers on a case-by-case basis and may be referred to the Regional
   BCP Coordinator or Senior Manager for a decision. In a national outage, Industry
   requests will only be considered by AQIS staff in the relevant region unless an Industry
   Notice is issued stating otherwise.



10.3 Urgent Customs Clearance
   AQIS recognises that Customs has Urgent Customs Clearance (UCC) provisions as
   outlined in the ICS BCP. AQIS will attempt to facilitate the movement of UCC cargo
   however, cargo of quarantine risk will receive higher priority.


11 Outage escalation and management in the event
  of an extended outage (Phase 2 Disaster)
Under direction from the Executive Manager, Quarantine Operations Division, AQIS will
establish a network of AQIS staff to ascertain the severity of the outage and AQIS ability to
cope. This network will be gathered and will communicate via teleconference. Attendees will
include (but are not limited to):
      Executive Manager, Quarantine Operations Division
      General Manager, Cargo
      General Manager, Quarantine Co-regulation & Support
      National BCP Coordinator
      Regional Managers
      BSG Business Continuity Divisional representatives
      Administrative Secretariat.

Additional AQIS attendees will be nominated at the discretion of the Executive Manager,
Quarantine Operations Division, dependent on the type and severity of the outage and the
impact on business processes.

This network will advise the Executive Manager, Quarantine Operations Division, on whether
it is necessary to escalate the issue to the Deputy Secretary and Secretary in order to initiate
the Department of Agriculture Fisheries & Forestry’s BCP and engage the Critical Incident
Management Team. Media and Ministerial liaison will be undertaken as per the Department’s
BCP.




                                                                                               15
12 Terms

Term/Acronym       Definition
AEP                Automatic Entry Processing
AIMS               AQIS Import Management System
AQIS               Australian Quarantine Inspection Service
BCP                Business Continuity Plan
CAL                AQIS Country Action List
CI&SC              Customs Information and Support Centre (in Sydney)
CSV                Comma Separated Value files that are similar in properties to
                   an Excel file.
CTO                Cargo Terminal Operator
Customs            Australian Customs and Border Protection Service
Customs ICS BCP    The Customs Integrated Cargo System Business Continuity
                   Plan, available at
                   http://www.cargosupport.gov.au/site/icsBusContinuity.asp
ICON               Import Conditions Database
ICS BCP Database   The ICS BCP Database is an IT application designed to
                   receive and process contingency CSV transaction files and
                   provide AQIS and/or Customs held or clear status to all
                   affected parties.
ICS                Customs Integrated Cargo System
ICT                Information and Communication Technology
Industry           All sectors of industry that communicate directly with the ICS.
RSS feeds          Really Simple Syndication feeds is a family of web feed
                   formats used to publish frequently updated works.
SAC                Self Assessed Clearance
SMS                Short Message Service
UCC                Urgent Customs Clearance




                                                                                     16
13 Related Documents
    The Customs Integrated Cargo System Business Continuity Plan, v 2.0 October
     2008, located at www.cargosupport.gov.au/site/icsBusContinuity.asp
    Memorandum of Understanding, Ref No 2008/14205, between AQIS and Customs,
     ‘In relation to access and use of the Integrated Cargo System (ICS) and BCP
     Contingency Database’.




                                                                                   17

				
DOCUMENT INFO
Shared By:
Categories:
Tags:
Stats:
views:4
posted:2/15/2012
language:
pages:17