22 April 2018
News | 06 Apr 2018

New Board of Directors elected

Copenhagen


At the Annual General Meeting in Copenhagen 6 April the shareholders of Risk Intelligence elected a new Board of Directors. The five members are coming from diverse backgrounds and bring with them a wealth of experience into Risk Intelligence’s Board of Directors. 

Jan Holm
Jan Holm is a member of the board. He is currently the CEO of Maersk Drilling in Singapore and responsible for the business of Maersk Drilling in Asia. Located in Singapore.

Stig Streit Jensen
Stig Streit Jensen is a member of the board. He has extensive experience from the IT industry and documented results within leadership, strategy and business development. Located in Denmark.

Jens Lorens Poulsen
Jens Lorens Poulsen is a member of the board. He is living in Dubai and is the co-founder and CEO of the Marcura Group. Located in UAE.

Jens Munch Holst
Jens Munch Holst is a member of the board. He is the CEO of MP Pension in Denmark and has a great amount of years’ experience within the pension area, for instance as CFO and CEO of Unipension. Located in Denmark.

Hans Tino Hansen
Hans Tino Hansen is a member of the Board. He is founder and CEO of Risk Intelligence. Located in Denmark.


Please find more details about each member under Board of Directors 

news | 14 Mar 2018

Oslo client seminar

Oslo


The Risk Intelligence client seminar in Oslo held on a sunny day with a fantastic view of the Oslo fjord outside the Norwegian Shipowners' Building in central Oslo.

Participants from shipping, offshore, insurance, classification, defence and shipowners association took part in the seminar. The seminar started with a luncheon and then provided an overview of carefully chosen current maritime threats and security trends with a focus on West Africa, Somalia, Libya and Yemen. 

We are looking forward to the next seminar in Oslo.

 

News | 13 Mar 2018

PortPages integration with Risk Intelligence System

Copenhagen


We were happy to announce the first collaboration between Risk Intelligence and Marcura - and Agents List from PortPages is now part of our PortRisk System. 

PortPages is a product by The Marcura Group, which also operates the world’s largest independent port cost management company, DA-Desk.

The PortPages tramp agency listing contains over 8,000 sanctions-screened port agencies across 4,000 ports globally. Exclusively to PortRisk, there is now the option to search for a list of up to 10 vetted, verified and compliant agencies available in a specific port. As the list is continuously updated and agents sanctions checked every 24 hours, you no longer need to maintain internal references, as you always get correct contact details and thereby reduce the risk of sanctions compliance issues. 

Read more about PortPages here 

News | 10 Feb 2018

Singapore Client Seminar

Singapore


On 6 February 2018 Risk Intelligence welcomed clients and a diverse group of specially invited guests to an afternoon security seminar at Singapore’s Marina at Keppel Bay. During the seminar participants received practical and timely updates from Risk Intelligence analysts covering several carefully chosen current maritime threats and security trends, including;

  • An update on West Africa, Somalia, Yemen, Libya, the Sulu and Celebes Seas
  • The situation on the Korean Peninsula and its impact on shipping, and
  • An update on maritime security providers operating in the Gulf of Guinea


Participants were also briefed on the latest developments with the Risk Intelligence System (MaRisk+PortRisk), as well as related products and services. During the presentations and breaks there was a constructive exchange of views and concerns, as participants took full advantage of the unique opportunity to directly engage with Risk Intelligence experts. 

News | 30 Jan 2018

Welcoming new intern at Risk Intelligence

Copenhagen


We are happy to welcome Evert Alder van der Werk (Eef) to the Risk Intelligence team as assistant, completing an academic internship. Eef is pursuing a Master’s degree in Security Risk Management from the University of Copenhagen.

Before that, he finished two bachelor degrees in International relations and Middle Eastern/Arabic studies. He has a keen interest in the MENA region, non-state actors, political violence, and peace and conflict mediation. He has traveled extensively in the MENA region and has studied Arabic in Egypt. Eef has worked as a growth-driven professional in various international oriented consultancy and start-up environments, including IB consultancy and Ageras. Eef is from the Netherlands and has lived in Copenhagen for two years, he speaks Dutch, English, Arabic, French and German.

We welcome Eef to the team, and are excited for the contributions he will make with his experience and knowledge. 

News | 12 Oct 2017

Nigerian Navy makes a stand on embarked armed guards

Nigeria



The Nigerian Navy finally have now officially, clearly and unambiguously stated that the Memorandum of Understanding is NOT about embarking armed guards on client vessels. This has always been the official position of the navy, but for various reasons, the organisation has been uanble to enforce their own policy. As a part of it's organisational overhaul, the Nigerian Navy is now taking a more pro-active stance in maritime security and has stated their intent to enforce the stipulations of the MoU by PMSCs or withdraw the MoU. 

On behalf of the Chief of Naval Staff, Rear-Admiral Osundo, Head of Standards and Transformation in the Operations Directorate, reiterated the official navy’s position vis-à-vis INTERTANKO and BIMCO that:

  • Armed guards are no longer allowed on board merchant vessels, i.e. tankers. This rule applies to anyone carrying a firearm, whether from the navy, police or any other agency civilian or military.

  • The Nigerian navy has entered into agreements with private security companies to supply armed escort vessels. These escort vessels are painted in Nigerian navy colours, have a Nigerian navy designation and will be crewed by, and under the command of, the navy. Civilian contractors would be on board to assist in maintenance and other general duties.

  • No private security company has the right to place armed guards on board merchant vessels.

  • There is one MoU for all twenty MoU holders. There are no special annexes, no dispensations or side-agreements to it.


For those in doubt, RAdm Osundo, at LISW and thereafter, also reiterated that privately operated escort vessels should meet Nigerian Navy standards (including suitable armament) and be approved by the Nigerian Navy prior to embarking Navy crews and weapons on it.

A number of MoU holders do not meet many of the most elementary requirements of the MoU. Therefore, Risk Intelligence, on behalf of our clients, has carried out desk-top and on-site due diligence assessments of private maritime security companies operating escort vessels in Nigeria to gain a better insight into the real capabilities and level of compliance. 

Press release | 11 Sep 2017

Risk Intelligence appoints Henrik Ehlers Kragh as COO

Vedbaek


International security intelligence company Risk Intelligence appoints Henrik Kragh as Chief Operating Officer.

Henrik Ehlers Kragh has been with Risk Intelligence since 2013 and most recently in the position as Director of Advisory Services. Before joining Risk Intelligence Henrik was Head of Anti-Piracy Coordination at Maersk Line. He has been working with complex risk and security issues for more than 30 years.

Commenting on Henrik’s appointment Hans Tino Hansen, CEO of Risk Intelligence, said “Henrik has been with Risk Intelligence for about four years and he knows our clients, our values and our strategies in depth”. “Organizing our products and services formally under one Executive makes good sense, and as streamlining and coordination across business areas has been Henrik’s key objective for the past 18 months, I am confident he is the right person to put in charge”. ”For me it is important to build an agile organization where we can both work towards a long term strategic objective and at the same time quickly adapt to market changes and requirements, and thereby keep supporting and adding value to our clients’ businesses”.

As a former major in the Danish Army Henrik is a graduate from the Danish General Joint Staff Course and has held a number of command and staff positions, among other as an analyst at the Danish Institute for International Studies (DIIS).

Henrik Ehlers Kragh says “I am pleased with this new opportunity to add value to Risk Intelligence; however, I am also humble about the task at hand”. “Risk Intelligence’s position among the leading global maritime security providers, is a result of a team effort - and team effort will also be a key instrument going forward”. “We will continue to provide quality decision support advice to our clients as a trusted and valued partner”. 

News | 31 Aug 2017

Welcoming two new interns at Risk Intelligence


We are happy to welcome Julia Anne van der Kooij and Marie Ali to the Risk Intelligence team as assistants, both are completing academic internships from the University of Copenhagen. Julia is a Master’s candidate in the Political Science department and, similarly, Marie is pursuing a Master’s degree in Security Risk Management.

Julia has previous work experience with the Canada Border Services Agency and as a Data Testing Coordinator with the Canadian transit system Metrolinx. Some of her interests include, but are not limited to, the movement of narcotics, prohibited weapons and human smuggling with special territorial interest in goods originating from Western Europe.  Julia is dual national, native to Canada with roots in the Netherlands.

Marie has worked as a growth-driven professional in various international business environments, including Gazprom Neft and Roland Berger Strategy Consultants. Her interests include the MENA region, sub-state actors, the politics of energy and the construction of identity and threat in foreign policy-making. Born and raised in Paris to Kurdish and Russian parents, she is fluent in French, Russian and English as well as competent in Spanish and Kurdish.

We welcome Julia and Marie to the team, and are excited for the contributions they will make with their experience and knowledge. 

News | 30 Jun 2017

Risk Intelligence updates overview for maritime security services in West Africa


Maritime operations in West Africa, especially in the inner Gulf of Guinea, are often complicated by a lack of security. Additional protection measures, both privately contracted or provided by national militaries, therefore continue to be in high demand. At the same time, operators should be aware of potential legal and operational risks when they are using such measures to protect ships, crews and cargoes.

Risk Intelligence has now published the latest guidance on the use of maritime security services in West Africa, including the use of armed guards, escort vessels or secure anchorages. The report is titled Maritime security services in West Africa – legal and operational challenges. It offers a birds-eye view on the situation in 19 countries throughout West and Central Africa, including Nigeria and other coastal states around the Gulf of Guinea.

“Our analysts have gathered extensive experience about the maritime security situation in West Africa. It is a complex picture with different types of threats in different areas,” says Hans Tino Hansen, CEO of Risk Intelligence. “Moreover, legal frameworks are often complicated, creating challenges in terms of risk mitigation. Our report is therefore important for all types of maritime operations throughout West Africa.”

The report provides a comprehensive look at risks related to the use of additional maritime security services in West Africa. Colour-coded tables for all 19 countries – including the coastal and island states between Senegal and Angola – offer a quick overview of the current situation. These are accompanied by explanations and assessments of the efficiency of specific security services against the main threats.

Subscribers will also receive an updated report in December and have access to Risk Intelligence’s West Africa specialists for related questions. The overall cost of this service is 5,000 EUR or 36,000 DKK.

For further information, please contact Risk Intelligence. 

Free Download | 03 Mar 2017

Risk Intelligence publishes Strategic Insights maritime security 2017 forecast issue

Risk Intelligence is making available for free download the concluding issue of its Strategic Insights series. 

Many of the areas reviewed in this issue will be familiar to maritime operators and long-time readers of Strategic Insights: Somalia and Nigeria, for example. But there are also new areas of concern emerging, as well as the return of power politics. One of the themes of this issue, which looks ahead to the challenges in 2017 and beyond, is that developments on land can ‘trickle down’ to the maritime domain. But this is not always the case, and each environment needs to be analysed on a case-by-case basis to completely understand the threat, and if it will affect maritime operations.

Overall, threats may be changing, with new locations emerging and new dynamics affecting operations. There are a number of trends at the macro and micro levels that will have implications in 2017 and beyond. But risks can still be mitigated and the starting point is information – assessments of threats and accompanying analysis. Risk Intelligence continues to provide global overviews on incidents and threats through its upgraded MaRisk 2.0 portal. As well, the PortRisk platform now provides full assessments of the threat environment for 170 ports around the world, and is continuing to add more.

Download here: 

Briefing | 01 Feb 2017

Risk Intelligence publishes maritime security forecast for Nigeria in 2017

Nigeria


Attacks against merchant vessels off Nigeria will remain a problem for ship operators in 2017. Risk Intelligence's maritime security forecast for the country underlines this and several other significant trends for this year. Moreover, the forecast identifies seven types of potential security incidents with varying threat levels.

Nigerian president Muhammadu Buhari has gained some respect for his efforts to tackle corruption but his government has so far failed to diversify the economy. Militancy in the Niger Delta throughout 2016 has increased problems even further and underlined that security and economic challenges are closely related.

For maritime operators, developments since early 2016 hold a mixed picture. Crude oil exports were down while imports of refined products increased due to lower output from domestic refineries. Overall, imports decreased due to the falling exchange rate but exports, particularly of agricultural goods, are likely to increase and bulk carrier operators are the most likely beneficiaries.

The Risk Intelligence maritime security forecast for Nigeria in 2017 has been published in January to users of the Risk Intelligence System (MaRisk+PortRisk), but can now be downloaded for free.

Risk Intelligence offers a broad range of services for maritime operators in West Africa. Our subscription-based services MaRisk and PortRisk provide a detailed overview over maritime security incidents in the region as well as threat assessments for countries, ports and cities. PortRisk currently covers almost 40 ports and offshore facilities in the region. Furthermore, RiskIntelligence offers detailed reports on specific issues such as the use of private maritime security companies in West Africa and provides bespoke threat and environment assessments for maritime operators in the region.

Please contact Risk Intelligence regarding further services and reports.

Download report: 

Press release | 20 Dec 2016

Risk Intelligence updates risk overview for privately contracted maritime security in West Africa

Copenhagen


Insecurity at sea is a major challenge for maritime operations in West Africa. Additional protection for ships, crews and cargoes is in high demand but operators often face operational and regulatory risks when they decide to use privately contracted maritime security services in the region. Risk Intelligence has now updated its overview of different types of maritime security provisions – ranging from armed guards to escort vessels and secure anchorages – that are legal in 18 countries throughout the region, including Nigeria and other Gulf of Guinea countries.

“We have provided security analysis for West Africa for more than 10 years,” says Hans Tino Hansen, CEO of Risk Intelligence. “It has always been a complex area with many different types of threats as well as many different types of risk mitigation and legal frameworks. With our report, we provide a clear and comprehensive overview that many maritime operators are looking for.”

The report provides a concise overview of risks related to the use of additional maritime security services in West Africa. For all 18 countries from Senegal to Angola, colour-coded tables provide a quick overview of the current situation, followed by a brief assessment of the efficiency of specific security services against the main threats. In addition, clients have access to Risk Intelligence’s West Africa specialists for questions related to the report, which will be updated every six months.

The cost of the service is 5,000 EUR or 36,000 DKK, which includes two reports (June and December).

Please contact Risk Intellgience for further information. 

Info | 17 Nov 2016

Anniversary: 10th renewal for MaRisk for a number of Risk Intelligence clients

Copenhagen


The end of the year marks an important milestone for Risk Intelligence and for a number of our clients as it is the 9th time they are renewing their MaRisk subscription license - and the 10th time including the first sign up.

Some of these clients were with us from an earlier stage and were part of the initial development process back in 2007/2008. Likewise, they again took part in the development of the new Risk Intelligence System. This process led to the launch of PortRisk in October 2015 and the new MaRisk in April this year.

 This anniversary tells me that we must have been doing something right over the years. Well done by the Risk Intelligence staff, who has been pivotal in operating and developing the solution to keep our clients safe. I would also like to thank our clients and partners for their longtime commitment and important feedback - without our close cooperation, Risk Intelligence would not be where we are today. I trust that we will have many more years of cooperation in front of us.

For more information about the Risk Intelligence System (MaRisk+PortRisk) please visit https://new.riskintelligence.eu/ ;

News | 05 Aug 2016

Risk Intelligence launches new weekly Turkey ports & terminals threat assessment report

Copenhagen


This week on Tuesday 2 August Risk Intelligence launched the weekly Turkey ports & terminals threat assessment report.

Risk Intelligence started this spring to produce a country threat assessment for Turkey on the Risk Intelligence System and eight ports are being added to the System (PortRisk).

Due to client requets, we also prepared the launch of a weekly report (similar to our weekly Libya and Yemen reports). The weekly report covers 12 ports and the Bosphorus.

The report will be published every Tuesday end of business.

For more information please contact us via the contact forn. 

Press release | 22 Jun 2016

Risk Intelligence launches new service providing overview of operational and regulatory risks of privately contracted maritime security in West Africa

Copenhagen


Maritime operations in West Africa are affected by threats from piracy and other maritime crime. It is very complex to get an overview of the different types of maritime security provisions that are legal in the countries throughout the region. Risk Intelligence now provides this insight with a new service, including reports with an overview of the use of private and government security in 18 countries in the region.

Risk Intelligence CEO Hans Tino Hansen: “We have provided security analysis for West Africa for more than 10 years. It has always been a complex area with many different types of threats and many different types of security risk mitigation and legal frameworks. This service and the new report provides a clear and comprehensive overview that many maritime operators have been asking for.”

The new report provides a concise overview of operational and regulatory risks related to the use of additional security services in West Africa. The report covers the use of armed guards and escort vessels provided by private maritime security companies or government security forces as well as additional protection services such as secure anchorages or areas for STS operations.

Colour-coded tables for every country provide a quick overview of the current situation in 18 countries from Senegal to Angola. Moreover, brief assessments of the efficiency of specific security services against the main threats, which maritime operators have to face in the respective region, are included. Overall, the report is a valuable tool for conducting the necessary due diligence prior to contracting additional security services for operations in the region.

In addition, clients will have access to Risk Intelligence’s West Africa specialists for questions related to the report, which will be updated every six months.

"Attempts to transfer the Indian Ocean PMSC model to West Africa have created problems for ship operators, who were made to believe that the solutions involving the use of government security forces on board their ships was "legal" or "approved" and provided the necessary level of security. In many countries in West Africa this is not the case, says Dirk Steffen, Director Maritime Security and head of West Africa Analysis at Risk Intelligence

For questions, please contact:

Dirk Steffen, Director Maritime Security      +45 70 26 62 30

Hans Tino Hansen, CEO                             +45 70 26 62 30 

News | 20 Jun 2016

Strategic Insights Arctic special edition

Kiel


The special Arctic edition of Risk Intelligence's Strategic Insights (no. 61) has been made available for free download in connection with the Kiel Conference 21 June 2016 "Cool Dispassion or Hot-Button Topic - The High North".
 

Briefing | 08 Jun 2016

Risk Intelligence publishes a brief Guide to Niger Delta Groups 2016

Nigeria


The Niger Delta Avengers (NDA) are Nigeria’s “new” Niger Delta militancy phenomenon. They have issued challenges to the Nigerian government, international oil companies and the military. Within a span of less than 3 months they are believed to be primarily responsible for reducing Nigeria’s oil production from a (theoretical) 2.2m barrels per day to around 1.4m barrels per day by the end of May 2016.

Risk Intelligence's brief "Guide to militant, ex-militant and activist groups in the Niger Delta" gives an overview of the most relevant militant and activits groups that are politically and militarily active in the first half of 2016, their agendas, operating areas and potential links amongst each other.

Please download a free copy: 

Conference | 31 May 2016

Maritime Security Conference: How Does Maritime Security Information Add Value to the Shipping Community?

Copenhagen 25 October 2016


Risk Intelligence aims to address some of the most pressing maritime security challenges facing the Shipping Community. Maritime security threats are evolving and challenges the Shipping Community, making valid maritime security information a major aspect for supporting operations and commercial considerations more than ever before.

Risk Intelligence is proud to announce its third consecutive Maritime Security Conference. This event will be hosted by Clipper Group and organized jointly by the Danish Shipowners’ Association, Oceans Beyond Piracy and Risk Intelligence during Danish Maritime Days 2016. Through presentations and conversations, speakers and participating experts will discuss this year’s theme; “How Does Maritime Security Information Add Value to the Shipping Community?”

The last two conferences have been attended by representatives from governments, the maritime industry, navies and academia, offering a unique forum for networking and exchange of cutting edge ideas and knowledge.

Taking place over three sessions, we will discuss the current maritime security threats and the future improvements to maritime security awareness. This conference will give a broader understanding of how maritime security information support daily operations and commercial opportunities.

Attendance is free but requires RSVP to Senior Project Associate Mr. Jens Vestergaard Madsen, Oceans Beyond Piracy: jvmadsen@obp.ngo 

Briefing | 28 Mar 2016

“Pirates of the Gulf” – a historic find on a Cameroonian beach

Cameroon

Dirk Steffen, Director Maritime Security with BIBIANA (Dirk Steffen)

Easter Sunday held a special surprise find for Risk Intelligence’s Director Maritime Security, Dirk Steffen, while he was travelling along the Cameroonian coast: the former Nigerian pirate vessel BIBIANA beached and abandoned near Kribi.

BIBIANA was part of a two-vessel pirate long-distance tanker hijacking operation in September and October 2014. The vessel departed from Nigeria around 27 September 2014 heading south through Cameroonian and Equatoguinean waters and on to Gabon. Based on reliable information, Risk Intelligence began issuing warnings to its subscribers of MaRisk from 29 September onwards, tracking the vessel’s progress south to a position offshore Port Gentil, where the BIBIANA experienced technical problems. The pirate mother vessel subsequently headed back north in the company of the small tanker SANKOFA, which was meant to be used for the stolen cargo in the planned operation.

The mission was eventually aborted, although the criminals launched an opportunistic attack against the ferry SAN MIGUEL near Equatorial Guinea on 5 October. Although the attackers failed to board the vessel, it galvanised the Cameroonian military into action and on 8 October 2014 the BIBIANA was intercepted by the Cameroonian Batallion d’Intervention Rapide (BIR) near Kribi. 21 Nigerian suspects were arrested; an unknown number of suspects escaped on the SANKOFA. 

Briefing | 08 Jan 2016

Iran and Saudi Arabia Assessment: Scenarios for future developments

(Arabian Peninsula and Persian Gulf with ports in PortRisk)

Risk Intelligence has Friday 8 January 2016 published a short assessment of the current conflict between Iran and Saudi Arabia with three scenarios for possible developments. Each scenario has a section on the impact on shipping and maritime operations.

The likely scenario that the souring in relations between Saudi Arabia and Iran will continue at the diplomatic and commercial relations level at least in the short term. This will have minimal impact on the regional maritime security environment, although broader security processes in Syria and Yemen will be affected. Indeed, some escalation in these areas is about as likely as not, perpetuating armed conflict – particularly in Yemen – which does have broader regional implications. Internal security in Saudi Arabia might also be affected, increasing the likelihood of sectarian violence.

Direct naval conflict or even low-level harassment of commercial shipping in the Persian Gulf cannot be ruled out, but is assessed as unlikely currently. Iran has limited if any interests in escalating the conflict in this area and has a broader agenda that involves a re-setting of relations with the US and Europe (and the lifting of sanctions) and pursuing its strategic interests in, particularly, Iraq and Syria. At the same time, Saudi Arabia does not have an interest in escalating the conflict any further or if it does happen the capability of running two armed conflicts at the same time.

The report can be downloaded below 

In the media | 07 Dec 2015

Al Jazeera special Report: The Pirates of Southeast Asia

South East Asia


Special Projects Manager, Karsten von Hoesslin, of Risk Intelligence, features in this two part special report by Al Jazeera on the Pirates of the Malacca Straight. The report focusses on the rise of piracy in the waters of Southeast Asia, where, so far, this year, the number of reported incidents has already exceeded the total of 2013. Karsten von Hoesslin provides an insight into the incentives and trade of the pirates.

The Al Jazeera report can be watched here; part 1, part 2

News | 24 Nov 2015

Use of Nigerian Navy for private security remains subject to severe restrictions

Nigeria

The current practice of using Nigerian Navy (and Nigerian security forces in general) is coming under review by the Buhari presidency. The past and current Navy Chiefs of Staff have endeavoured to curtail activities which they feel is hollowing out the Navy’s capabilities without providing adequate returns. A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) governs the conditions under which private security companies may access Nigerian Navy personnel.

In a nutshell: articles 5 and 6 of the Memorandum stipulate that any vessels upon which Nigerian Navy personnel is embarked must be "approved and inspected" by the Nigerian Navy, capable of taking a mounted weapon and be entered in the Nigerian fleet list. Only then is it allowed to contract navy personnel to man these vessels. It appears likely that the legal review undertaken by the current presidency will focus on compliance with the MoU.

The vast majority of MoU holders in Nigeria violate these stipulation by embarking navy personnel directly on client ships. There has been misleading guidance to the effect that the following is adequate in order to provide armed security in Nigerian waters:

  • A Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps license (for guard companies)
  • An MoU in the name of the PMSC
  • A  NIMASA license to operate as a Guard Force Security company in the Maritime Sector
  • A Certificate of incorporation in Nigeria
  • Evidence of an expatriate quota

Whilst this documentation is necessary to operate as a maritime security company, it does not in itself provide authorisation for embarking Nigerian Navy personnel on merchant vessels. Furthermore, the NSCDC license is reserved for unarmed guard services, hence all authorisation to operate hinges on compliance with the MoU. It is incorrect to use the term “legal”, since no legislation in Nigeria exists that regulates armed maritime security activity. Using authorisations other than that provided by the Navy Chief of Staff (through the MoU) and failure to comply with the stipulations of the MoU creates the risk of detentions and fines for ship operators.

Lastly, it should be remembered that the embarkation of armed security in the configuration of three to four man teams with light weapons provides little to no deterrence for those attackers which pose the greatest risk. Numerous firefights with casualties and boardings including kidnappings have demonstrated the increased risk by using embarked Nigerian security forces, e.g.:

  • PYXIS DELTA (4 February 2013, Lagos) – one crewmember was killed in the crossfire between embarked security forces and attackers.
  • SP BRUSSELS (29 April 2014, Niger Delta) – one crewmember was killed, one severely injured when two Nigerian Police Force embarked on the ship failed to prevent a boarding by pirates.
  • SEA STERLING (26 August 2014, Niger Delta) – no casualties, but attackers managed to briefly board the vessel against the resistance of two Nigerian Navy ratings before a Nigerian Navy patrol vessel appeared on the scene.
  • SEA VOYAGER (5 November 2014, Niger Delta) – possibly two naval ratings killed or injured when armed attackers boarded the ship. The soldiers fled into the citadel.
  • JASCON 24 (23 January 2015, Niger Delta) – one naval rating was killed on the vessel which was actually functioning as a “security vessel” for an offshore oil & gas operation. The attackers managed to board the vessel and engaged the soldiers in a firefight. Two of the four soldiers embarked on the vessel fled into the citadel.
  • KALAMOS (3 February 2015, Niger Delta) – one crewmember was killed by a Nigerian Navy rating who disobeyed the master’s order to hold fire during a hostage stand-off on the ship’s bridge. The attackers had boarded the ship undetected by the crew or the security detachment.

This guidance has just been published on Risk Intelligence's Intelligence System http://new.riskintelligence.eu/
For any questions please contact us via the contact form or by phone. 

Press release | 03 Sep 2015

Maritime Security Challenges to be Addressed During Danish Maritime Days 6 October


Piracy and armed robbery against ships, corruption, and illegal trafficking are well-known maritime security challenges – now it is time to find solutions. On Tuesday, October 6th, an international conference organized for the second year in a row by the Danish Shipowners’ Association, Oceans Beyond Piracy (OBP), and Risk Intelligence, in cooperation with Clipper, will focus on the biggest and most pressing maritime security challenges facing the maritime industry and governments maritime security and aims to find new solutions to address these threats. 

At the conference, which is a part of Danish Maritime Days, international maritime experts from both the public and private sectors will discuss regional maritime security challenges in West Africa and Southeast Asia – as well as identify opportunities for governments and the maritime industry to work together to address threats to maritime security. The agenda includes international keynote speakers, expert presentations, panel discussions, and workshops with a particular emphasis on interactive sessions aimed at engaging all participants and including their expertise and knowledge in the conference outputs.

“This year’s theme for the conference is ‘Regional Maritime Security Challenges and Opportunities for Governments and Industry’. It’s a unique opportunity that we can gather so many participants from the maritime sector with a shared interest in a common effort to address some of the most pressing maritime security challenges,” says Hans Tino Hansen, CEO of Risk Intelligence, who will provide a presentation outlining the current status of global maritime security challenges.

The recent increase in maritime piracy and armed robbery against ships in Southeast Asia, and persistent high levels of maritime crime in West Africa, are indications that addressing these costly threats to international trade and seafarers need fresh thinking and clear strategies. ”Security is extremely important for governments, shipping companies, seafarers, and everybody who works in the maritime sector – therefore it is crucial that we meet to discuss challenges and how  we in common can solve them. That is rarely done across governmental and private stakeholders – which is why this conference is so important,” says Morten Glamsø, Senior Advisor at the Danish Shipowners’ Association.

Last year’s conference attracted more than 90 participants from 12 different countries, representing both public and private organizations and agencies, to discuss the effects of maritime crime on economic growth and development in Africa. “The conclusions last year showed that there are important lessons to be learned from the successful international effort to address Somali piracy. These must be retained in order to avoid a resurgence in attacks off the Horn of Africa, but may also have applications in other regions” says Jens Vestergaard Madsen, Senior Project Associate at OBP.

The conference takes place on October 6th from 0930 to 1615 at Clipper House in Copenhagen, and will be followed by an informal reception and networking session. Attendance is free, but registration is required and space is limited. More information about the agenda, speakers and how to register can be found at http://ow.ly/Rd7Lw

In the media | 22 Jul 2015

Southeast Asia – a pirates’ paradise

DW (Deutsche Welle)

According to the International Maritime Bureau, the waters off the coasts of Malaysia, Indonesia and Singapore now contain the highest number of operating pirate networks in the world. This year alone, pirate attacks in Southeast Asia accounted for more than half of the world’s reported pirate attacks. In a recent interview with Germany’s international news broadcaster Deutsche Welle, Southeast Asia expert and Risk Intelligence senior analyst Karsten von Hoesslin sheds light on how Southeast Asia seemingly has become ‘a pirates’ paradise’.

To Deutsche Welle, von Hoesslin explains how it is a number of regional factors and conditions combined that has turned Southeast Asia into a hotspot for piracy. For one, the straits of Malacca, Singapore and in the South China Sea constitute some of the most trafficked and thus profitable maritime areas in the world. Further, a dense web of small and desolate islands in the region provides the perfect hideaway for pirates. And last, an underlying interstate distrust characterizing regional initiatives, coupled with weak and corrupt police units, have turned counter piracy efforts inefficient and mainly symbolic. Pirate networks have thus been allowed to proliferate and professionalize into ‘logistical masterpieces’, von Hoesslin explains: “Today, everything is pre-planned and is part of a larger criminal activity. It is very easy to counterfeit legal papers for the products such as palm oil, gas or petrol and to transport them.”

The proliferating piracy in Southeast Asia spreads insecurity for seafarers in the region and is estimated to cost millions of dollars every year. That pirate networks continue to evolve into professional crime syndicates, while regional initiatives remain no more than ‘gesture politics’ is thus highly problematic, von Hoesslin warns.

To learn more and read the full interview with von Hoesslin, click here

In the media | 08 Jul 2015

Islamic State aims to hit the Suez Canal

ShippingWatch

Recently, Egypt inaugurated a major expansion to the Suez Canal during a large national ceremony. Before the inauguration Danish maritime magazine ShippingWatch interviewed CEO and founder of Risk Intelligence, Hans Tino Hansen, about the maritime security risks facing the new canal.

Several security experts have argued the new Suez Canal to be an obvious target for terrorist groups, such as Islamic State. And in Egypt, thirteen people were recently arrested for being under suspicion of plotting bombings on the canal. Commenting on the likelihood of an attack on the new Suez Canal, Hans Tino Hansen told ShippingWatch: “IS will probably try to hit the canal. It is doubtful how much damage they can actually cause, beyond creating insecurity. And while insecurity is also what they aim for  we do not, at the moment, estimate Islamic State or any other radical groups to have the capacity to fully halt operations in the canal.”

Hans Tino Hansen further underlined that while increased attacks on ships in the new canal is a significant risk, the effects of a ship attacks are usually, among radical Islamist groups, considered to be minor compared to the effort it takes to conduct such attacks. Inland attacks are known to be much more efficient. Yet, it cannot be excluded, Hansen ads, that someone would attempt an attack just to show that they can.

To read the whole interview, click here. Note that the interview is only available in Danish. 

In the media | 19 Jun 2015

Essay: Quantifying Piracy Trends in the Gulf of Guinea — Who’s Right and Who’s Wrong?

USNI News

Risk Intelligence senior analyst and West Africa expert Dirk Steffen has published an essay on the US Naval Institute’s online news and analysis portal (USNI News), where he challenges mainstream piracy analysis based on incident counts:  ‘Quantifying Piracy Trends in the Gulf of Guinea — Who’s Right and Who’s Wrong?’ He examines how public and private organizations quantify and record incidents of armed robbery, piracy and other maritime security risks in the Gulf of Guinea, and how such quantifications shape differing and often contrasting perceptions of maritime security and stakeholder responses to it.

Mismatching security perceptions are common in the Gulf of Guinea. While the International Maritime Bureau recently published a report concluding a drop of 18% of piracy attacks in the Gulf of Guinea, large insurance companies and other organizations still perceive the gulf as a high-risk area and present data that shows significant increases in piracy-related incidents. To Steffen, the reason for such different security perceptions are to be found in the production of numbers and making of categories that, by being directed towards different commercial interests and stakeholders’ needs, often only presents one-sided dimensions of reality. Recording only “acts of piracy”, the International Maritime Organization for example, constitutes one organization presenting a narrow version of maritime insecurity directed for the most part against seafarers of foreign-trading ships. Using the numbers of the International Maritime Organization on the Gulf of Guinea is inadequate if one seeks a general understanding of West African maritime security patterns, writes Steffen. He emphasizes how maritime security in this region encompasses several nuanced and hard to define-challenges beyond piracy, but often closely related to it. Illegal bunkering, theft, various types of trafficking, illegal and unregulated fishing, for example all contribute to making maritime security risks hard to quantify through simple categories, but are essential for explaining piracy phenomena off the Gulf of Guinea coast.

Industry and stakeholders demand numbers and quantification upon which they can base risk assessments and this has led to an increase in maritime security and intelligence organizations offering such numbers, Steffen writes. While any increase in reporting and recording of maritime security incidents is to be welcomed, the utility of such figures is strongly reliant on the ability to recognize the different ways in which organizations quantify maritime insecurity and how and to which end they draw conclusions from it.

Steffen concludes that there remains a need to complement the quantitative data gathering on the Gulf of Guinea – and elsewhere – with qualitative assessments and a broader focus on the maritime security climate for meaningful forecasts and selection of mitigation measures. As Steffen writes, “numbers alone do not provide an understanding of a maritime security situation. The intelligence analysis behind them does.”

To read the full article, click here. 

In the media | 14 Jun 2015

Talking with the wrong Libyans

The New York Times

Together with researcher Brian Klaas, Risk Intelligence associate North Africa analyst Jason Pack has published an op-ed, wherein he urges the West to rethink ongoing United Nations-sponsored peace talks on Libya, and start engaging with those that actually have the power to make a difference in forging lasting peace in Libya.

Thursday, the deadline for a United Nations-sponsored peace agreement on Libya passes. Currently, Libya is now in civil war and since last election, the country has had two governments claiming nationwide rule. While one elected, largely anti-Islamist government has taken refuge in Tobruk, another self-appointed Islamic government controls Tripoli. So far, the West has through the United Nations-peace talks engaged most with the government in Tobruk. However, this administration has recently rejected the United Nations’ latest peace sharing proposal.

Without a peace agreement, civil war in Libya is likely to intensify, Klaas and Point state. This is bad for Libya, but also for the West: The increasing presence of ISIS in Libya, as well as continuous smuggler operations along Libya’s unpatrolled borders pose severe challenges to both regional and international security and stability.

So how does the West turn around the downward-spiraling peace talks and create meaningful negotiations that can contribute to forging lasting peace in Libya? Klaas and Pack’s key point is that the West must change the format of the current United Nations-sponsored peace talks radically. Crucial to such change is arguably to shy away from the ‘narrow anti-Islamist ideology’ currently leading the talks, and start involving the actors who actually have de facto control over Libyan territory. Such actors are neither the government in Tobruk nor the one in Tripoli solely, but militia commanders and local councils. As Klaas and Pack write, “ultimately, Europe and America will have to engage directly with the militias, especially the powerful Misratan bloc, which can actually contain jihadists and the flow of migrants. If they do not, Libya will remain paralyzed by political stalemate, drenched in the blood spilled by ISIS and haunted by the ghosts of helpless migrants drowning on Europe’s doorstep.”

To read the full version of the opinion editorial, click here 

In the media | 19 May 2015

Shipping companies use billions on security in West Africa

DR2, DR P1 and P3

Piracy-related incidents off the coast of West Africa are increasingly in focus and the high security cost of sailing through the Gulf of Guinea is posing concern to Danish shipping companies, Danish television news magazine DR2 Morgen reports. CEO and founder of Risk Intelligence, Hans Tino Hansen, visited national TV DR2 Morgen to talk about the maritime threat environment in the Gulf of Guinea and the Danish government’s new piracy strategy, which includes a refocussing of efforts from East Africa to West Africa.

When the Danish government earlier this year presented a new piracy strategy for 2015 to 2018, it included a new plan on partaking in piracy-combatting efforts in the Gulf of Guinea. Denmark already has successful experience with being part of counter-piracy efforts from its engagement in the Gulf of Aden in East Africa. However, piracy in West Africa differs significantly from piracy in East Africa, Hans Tino Hansen tells DR2 Morgen.

“In East Africa, piracy was mainly characterized by simple straightforward hijacking for ransom. Piracy off the coast of Nigeria is far more complicated,” Hans Tino Hansen explains. “West African maritime crime spans over everything from small harbor thefts over kidnap for ransom to opportunistic armed piracy to planned large-scale hijacking of product tankers.. This is a high surplus demanded in Nigeria as Nigeria have crude oil, but lack refineries to produce enough products for the market. For this reason, there is a massive demand and a large black market for refined oil.”

The hijackings of product tankers off the coast of Nigeria signifies that larger crime syndicates with connections to military and political circles are involved, Hans Tino Hansen informs DR2 Morgen.  So while Somalia posed a challenge and piracy threat by being a failed state, this was what allowed international actors to operate more or less freely when pursuing pirates. In West Africa, Nigeria and other West African states, pose a challenge to international piracy-combatting efforts by being sovereign states wanting to protect their own waters and exercise their own national jurisdiction – despite the possible lack of ability or interest to do so. In Nigeria, where the piracy-problem is the biggest, the piracy problem “is simply not a strategic problem” Hans Tino Hansen tells DR2 Morgen: “A strategic problem for Nigeria is one such as Boko Haram in northern Nigeria. In contrast to this group, which the Nigerian military has to deploy a lot of resources to combat, piracy is not much more than a mere irritation – rather, it is in some cases a source to funding for certain circles.”

To the question of what the different circumstances in West Africa means for the future Danish engagement here, Hans Tino Hansen says that it is pivotal to look at the effort regionally and to include willing neighboring countries: “If we can succeed in helping neighboring countries by developing and capacity-building their maritime capabilities and local authorities, then we can contain the Nigerian problem while at the same time trying to work with Nigeria”.

To see the full interview with Hans Tino Hansen in Danish, click here. To hear a similar interview with Hans Tino Hansen in Danish by the radio news magazine P1, click here. To hear Hans Tino Hansen’s comments on piracy in West Africa – also in Danish – to the Danish popular radio show P3, click here. 

In the media | 11 May 2015

Piracy in Asia on the rise

The Straits Times

Singapore Straits (Karsten von Hoesslin)

Since last year, reports of pirate attacks in the waters surrounding Singapore has been on the rise. Especially fuel and oil-related incidents have increased significantly, the Straits Times writes in their article ‘Piracy in Asia on the rise’. Special projects manager for Risk Intelligence, Karsten von Hoesslin, contributes to the article by sharing his insight on crime and pirate syndicates in Southeast Asia.

According to von Hoesslin, fuel is “the perfect product to steal” in Southeast Asia. A lucrative regional black market exists for the commodity, as fuel “is nearly untraceable”; often blended with other materials or sold directly on to other vessels. Efforts to curb the attacks are therefore challenging and they are further hindered by the fact that Asian pirate syndicates are extremely hard to map. Whereas “foot soldiers” are primarily Indonesian, “middlemen and big bosses” are often Malaysian and Singaporean. And "[t]he money often ends up in a 'Big Boss' Singaporean bank account", von Hoesslin tells the Straits Times. All of these factors combined make it only expectable that fuel-related piracy incidents will continue to occur in Asia, according to von Hoessling.

Singapore is the no. 1 bunker market in the world. However, as von Hoesslin finally explains in ‘Piracy in Asia on the rise’, the Singaporean market is also “known for a darker side to its bunkering legacy. Syndicates have acknowledged that bunkering agents in Singapore are often the 'insider information' link that is compromised when it comes to the security of the vessel and cargo."

To read the full article, click here. To read another article using Karsten von Hoesslin’s comments on the rise in fuel-related piracy in Asia, published by BunkerWorld, click here. Note that the latter link is only viewable for subscribers. 

In the media | 05 May 2015

Maersk opting to be ”more cautious” at Iran

Shippingwatch

After Iran’s arrest of Maersk Tigris in the Strait of Hormuz, the US Navy has been escorting British and American vessels through the narrow strait. Maersk Line, which still awaits information from Iran on Maersk Tigris’ arrest, has not employed any new security measures. Rather, the carrier has opted for merely encouraging a “more cautious” approach among its vessels in the Hormuz area. To Shipping Watch, CEO and founder of Risk Intelligence, Hans Tino Hansen lays out three possible scenarios related to the Iranian arrest of Maersk Tigris, which may explain the crisis as well as the differing responses thereto.

The worst-case scenario is according to Hans Tino Hansen the scenario that underlies Iran’s official explanation of why Maersk Tigris was arrested: “… if a civil lawsuit is in fact the reason this ship was arrested… all parties with even the slightest ties to business relations in the country could face a potential risk of a similar incident. One could ask why the Iranians would pick a ship that in fact has nothing to do with Maersk Line beyond the fact that the carrier has chartered it," Hansen says.

However, this worst-case scenario is also the least likely, according to Hansen. A second, more likely scenario is based on intelligence: “There are numerous factors indicating that the Revolutionary Guard is behind this. This means there could be some internal Iranian political matter behind the incident, where someone wanted to fan the flame, so to speak, following the nuclear negotiations, in order to see how the world and not least the US would react. If so, this is likely an isolated event that will not develop further, and which will hopefully be resolved soon," Hansen tells Shipping Watch.

To read the full article and learn about the third scenario, click here. 

In the media | 01 May 2015

Shipping warned on Iran action against Maersk

IHS Maritime 360: Safety and Security

In an interview with Girija Shettar from IHS Maritime 360, CEO of Risk Intelligence, Hans Tino Hansen, warns that Shipping-related businesses could be at risk while operating in the Persian Gulf.

Since the Iranian Revolutionary Guards on 28 April seized the ship Maersk Tigris in the Strait of Hormuz, the United States has sent navy ships to escort US-flagged vessels in the area. Commenting on the arrest, which allegedly was due to an unresolved commercial case between Maersk and an Iranian company, Hans Tino Hansen tells IHS Maritime; “the problem is quite big. You have a situation where any company or any vessel that is connected directly or indirectly to a court case or potential court case or commercial dispute in Iran could face arrest in the Persian Gulf. That could be the conclusion and that has potential for a lot of problems”.

However, Hansen also points out to IHS Maritime that “If [the arrest was not actually carried out on the basis of a commercial claim], then it might be a smokescreen - the result of a game between hardliners and those, in Iran, who want negotiations with the international community… If the Americans had sent in a destroyer and something had happened - that would be the end of the negotiations”. The official Iranian explanation of a civil lawsuit as laying ground for the arrest of Maersk Tigris can be viewed as a ‘loophole’ out of a sticky domestically rooted political situation, according to Hans Tino Hansen. Yet, Hans Tino Hansen underlines to IHS Maritime that ship operators should stay very cautious when operating in the area around the Strait of Hormuz, as “you actually don't know what is going to be the rule going forward”.

To read the full online article of IHS Maritime, click here.
 

In the media | 30 Apr 2015

Risk Intelligence: Madness if debt is the cause of the Maersk-seizure

Søfart

Risk Intelligence CEO, Hans Tino Hansen, calls it ‘an unheard use of force’ from Iranian side if a civil debt issue is what has forced the ship ‘Maersk Tigris’ from international waters to Iran. Other reasons must lay behind the violent arrest, he tells the Danish maritime news magazine Søfart.

Iran’s official explanation of the Iranian military’s strange boarding and detainment of Maersk Tigris is now that the arrest stems from an unresolved debt issue between Maersk and Iranian companies. In relation to this statement, Maersk Lines has confirmed that they do have an unresolved civil debt issue with an Iranian company. This allegedly stems from 2005 where about 10 containers were shipped to Dubai for an Iranian company. The containers were never picked up and ended up being assigned to the United Arab Emirates’ authorities. The assignment led to a long-lasting, still unresolved lawsuit, Søfart writes. Commenting on the issue for Søfart, Hans Tino Hansen says, however, that other reasons than a civil lawsuit should lay behind the violent arrest of Maersk Tigris: “If the issue of debt proves to be the foundation, then it is madness. It is unheard of that one uses military power to seize a ship in internationally recognized waters, only to clarify what is in fact a civil lawsuit. In such case, it opens for a complete chaos on the high seas”.

Risk Intelligence believes it is more likely that Iran’s official debt explanation serves as a smokescreen for the West and a resort for the Iranians. As previously explained to Søfart, Risk Intelligence believe the Iranians use the debt explanation to escape a tense international situation essentially rooted in domestic political infighting between so-called hardliners and more Western-oriented and negotiation-friendly politicians (in Iran).

To read the full article in Danish, follow this link: http://soefart.dk/?art=6574. Please note that only subscribers of Søfart have full access to the article.
 

In the Media | 29 Apr 2015

Maersk Tigris seizure happens only days after ’Maersk Kensington’-confrontation

Søfart

Tuesday’s Iranian seizing of the Maersk-chartered containership ‘Maersk Tigris’ happens only four days after another ship, ‘Maersk Kensington’, had a confrontation with Iranian gunboats, Maersk Line’s press Officer Michael Storgaard informs Danish maritime news magazine Søfart.

Maersk Kensington was approached by what was estimated to be four Iranian gunboats, while sailing on the route between the Persian Gulf and the Mediterranean. Maersk Tigris’ forced redirection from passage in the Strait of Hormuz thus follows in the wake of a similar Maersk Line-experience in the same waters. Although Maersk Kensington (contrary to Maersk Tigris) was able to sail on unhindered, Michael Storgaard informs Søfart that Maersk Line finds the recent Iranian interferences strange and unusual. The shipping company is however not ready to let the events influence their operations at this point, Michael Storgaard says.

At Risk Intelligence, the over Iran’s recent actions in the Strait of Hormuz is shared. But neither here, the recent events make the company raise the threat assessment/level for ships in the strait:

“Clearly, after the two incidents this week, there is a large focus on security. Everyone needs to be alert to Iranian military vessels. However, we do not estimate that there is a general escalation in the threat picture on the short-term”, Hans Tino Hansen, founder and CEO of Risk Intelligence, informs Søfart. He explains, “Our suggestion is that it is internal Iranian affairs that has triggered the seizing/arrest. Together with the Revolutionary Guard, hardliners may have used this event to pressure those who are more negotiation-friendly in Iran”.

To read the full article in Danish, follow the link: http://www.soefart.dk/?art=6567. Please note that the full article is only available for subscribers. 

In the media | 23 Apr 2015

Maritime operations against smugglers in the Mediterranean

Danish Radio P1 Orientering

Photo: unhcr.org

The migrant crisis in the Mediterranean reached high-level attention as European heads of state and government recently gathered in Brussels to discuss how the EU should respond to the pressing situation along its southern border. Among discussions of a more just distribution of asylum-seekers and resettlement, EU leaders discussed a possible military intervention against Libyan migrant smugglers and their boats in the Mediterranean.

Søren Carlsen from the Danish national radio program “P1 Orientering” interviewed CEO and founder of Risk Intelligence, Hans Tino Hansen, about limitations and possibilities for an EU-initiated military intervention against migrant smugglers in the Mediterranean.

On the potential of a military operation, Hans Tino Hansen said; “Military intervention is a very hard task. The persons you target through military operations such as those proposed by the EU, are those in lowest levels of the smuggling network. The ones you really should target are those that are in the core of the network. Also, according to international law, you can’t just bomb the boats. You need to identify the ship first, and clarify whether it is involved in illegal activities. Only then you can then proceed to board and seize the boat and arrest the smugglers if you have evidence of their criminal behavior. The smugglers are not terrorists, but criminals. They need to be proven guilty and judged accordingly.”

Rather than focusing on a pure military intervention, Hans Tino Hansen suggests that emphasis should be on stopping the organisers of the smuggling networks. This could be achieved by cooperating internationally on  stopping financial flows to the backers of the networks, increasing safety, security and naval operations in the Mediterranean, and providing support to improve the political and economic development in Libya – similar efforts that all proved successful in combatting Somali piracy networks.

P1 Orientering is a Danish national radio news magazine that analyses developments in Danish, European and international politics on a daily basis. Click here for the full radio interview in Danish.

Click here for the full radio interview in Danish
 

In the media | 23 Apr 2015

Obangame Express 2015: Two steps forward. One step back.

Center for International Maritime Security

Adm Biekro, Ghana Navy Chief of Staff (Photo: US Navy)

Dirk Steffen, Director of Maritime Security at Risk Intelligence, has written an article for Center for International Maritime Security (CIMSEC) about this year’s OBANGAME EXPRESS exercise.

Obangame Express is an annual maritime security exercise hosted by the United States Africa Command (AFRICOM) with participation by Western and Central African states. This year it took place off the coasts of West African states between Côte d’Ivoire and Angola. Since its inception in 2011, the Obangame Express exercise has grown from involving only nine nations to involve 23 nations this year, including 12 Gulf of Guinea countries.

Risk Intelligence’s Dirk Steffen observed this year’s Obangame Express exercise as part of his deployment with the German Navy. For CIMSEC, he explains how this year’s exercise was particularly interesting: it was the first exercise to rehearse and test the new structures and procedures provided by the recently ratified Yaoundé Code of Conduct.

The Yaoundé Code of Conduct obliges Western and Central African member states to co-operate on preventing and prosecuting all forms of maritime crime and illicit activities at sea and share information between each other. By providing an information sharing and co-ordination structure, it should allow countries from ECOWAS and ECCAS to communicate multilaterally on maritime challenges.

Obangame Express 2015 was a testing ground for the new interregional command, control and communications arrangements. Evaluating this in his article, Dirk Steffen describes how results, on a tactical level, were mixed: ranging from pleasant surprises to disappointments. Nonetheless, Dirk Steffen considers Obangame Express to be a valuable exercise in the sense that it offers an insight onto multiple aspects of maritime security operations in West Africa; their progress as well as the absence of it. Obangame Express provides an annual benchmark, registering and informing about change in any direction.

To learn more about the assessment of the West and Central African navies during the exercise, read the full article on http://cimsec.org/obangame-express-2015-two-steps-forward-one-step-back/16227

In the media | 22 Apr 2015

The Danish Frigate and flexible operations: thinking through an LCS alternative

Second Line of Defense

Iver Huitfeldt F361 (Photo: Danish Defence)

The Littoral Combat Ships (LCS) are a unique class of new ships that are being built and deployed as hybrids between a Frigate and a Fast Patrol Boat. There has been voiced much concern around building a unique class of ships as these require a unique class of mission modules. On the contrary, the trend nowadays is to build frigates that have capabilities for a variety of combat operations.

At the Airpower Symposium held in Copenhagen earlier this month journalist Robbin Laird and Editor Ed Timperlake from Second Line of Defense Forum sat down with CEO and founder of Risk Intelligence, Hans Tino Hansen, to talk about the introduction of the LCS in relation to the Danish Frigate.

In the Danish Frigate, the new Danish Iver Huitfelt class of frigates constitutes an example of a recently acquired frigate that is leveraged to operate in a variety of missions. The acquirement of the ships are based on a vision of a sound frigate that can evolve over time, Hans Tino Hansen explains: “Earlier, the Danish navy had small and fast ships along with submarines to operate in the Baltic. After the end of the Cold War, thinking moved to having larger ships able of more a wider-range of operations”.

The Danish frigate now provides command and control for a variety of missiles: “We can buy missiles not even yet developed which use this launch tube, and we can evolve the C2 to use these missiles in a broader engagement as well,” Hans Tino Hansen informs. “Two frigates can more or less cover Danish airspace… and they can provide area coverage for the Baltics.” With the Danish Air Force not having missile defense capabilities any longer, the frigates thus possess a potentially central role in a future missile defense system for the region.

In relation to the possible future use of LCS, Hans Tino Hansen concludes, “They really fall between the classes of ships we use, and the various sea states in which we have to operate. I can see perhaps their value in UN missions or very low conflict spectrum settings, but we simply do not have enough ships to build a ship for the lower end of the warfighting spectrum… The LCS seems more like the corvettes, which the British used, in the last war to provide convoy support. They had limited weapons, primarily for convoy defense and could not hunt submarines”.

Read the full interview on Second Line of Defense’s webpage: http://www.sldinfo.com/the-danish-frigate-and-flexible-operations-thinking-through-an-lcs-alternative/ ;

Briefing | 05 Apr 2015

Buhari wins Nigerian election - implications for maritime security

MaRisk briefing

Muhammadu Buhari has emerged as the winner in Nigeria’s presidential elections. The defeated incumbent Goodluck Jonathan is stepping aside in good grace – or so it seems.

What are the implications of this result for maritime security in Nigeria and the Gulf of Guinea in the short and in the long term? Read a snapshot analysis of the situation in Risk Intelligence’s briefing paper “Buhari wins Nigeria’s presidential elections: implications for maritime security in the Gulf of Guinea”.

This assessment was prepared for MaRisk, Risk Intelligence's maritime threat monitoring system, and has now been made available for a wider audience.

Please click on the top right bar to download the PDF. 

In the Media | 31 Mar 2015

Unlikely that the Yemen Conflict will close the Bab-El-Mandeb Strait

Søfart

The passage between the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden is too important for the threat of a longer sea route south of Africa to be Risk Intelligence informs the Danish maritime magazine Søfart, 31 March.

In a conflict developing by the day, it can be hard to take stock. The unrest in Yemen is currently a great source of worry, especially to the oil industry, who fear a closure of the narrow Bab-el-Mandeb strait is widespread. Such closure would imply that merchant vessels can no longer use the shortcut through the Suez Canal, but will be forced to take the longer route south of Africa.

Risk Intelligence estimates, however, that even with all ports in Yemen being officially shut down at the moment, there is no reason to believe that the maritime hub of the Bab-el-Mandeb strait will be blocked. Yemen simply profits too well from keeping the international waters open for sailing, CEO of Risk Intelligence, Hans Tino Hansen explains: “A great deal of the LNG-transport from Yemen LNG in Balhaf happens through the Suez Canal, and any future government will be dependent of these revenues, and thus none of the two sides of the conflict has an interest in destroying this”. This fact makes Risk Intelligence conclude that while there has been talks of blockade of the strait between Yemen and Djibouti, this is highly unlikely on the short term, and will probably only present itself as a possibility if the conflict in Yemen leads to war breaking out between international actors.

Despite reports of Djibouti having had its port capacity strongly tested, there is almost no effect of the Yemen crisis on international transit sailing through the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden right now, Risk Intelligence finally tells maritime media Søfart. Recognizing the constant developments of the volatile situation in Yemen, however, Risk Intelligence has upgraded their security updates with a weekly report dedicated to the security situation in Yemen and around, constructed in parts by private sources in Yemen. 

In the media | 26 Mar 2015

Yemen shuts down all shipping

Søfart

A Shia uprising in Yemen has caused Saudi-led forces to initiate bombings on Yemeni territory, and this has resulted in Yemen shutting down all of its sea ports, Hans Tino Hansen, CEO at Risk Intelligence, tells the Danish maritime magazine, Søfart.

The shutdown has major implications for all ships calling Yemeni ports, and the uprising in Yemen has thus reached a new level for maritime security risk, Hans Tino Hansen warns.
Whereas the assessment of Risk Intelligence in February was that the Yemeni ports of Aden and Hodeidah were still relatively safe, the recommendation from Risk Intelligence is now that one should make sure to stay completely up to date on what is happening in Yemen, as the conflict according to Hans Tino Hansen can quickly change directions.

For the full article in Danish, see the link below (subscription needed): 

News | 25 Feb 2015

PFSO kursus

Fredericia Havn 4.-5. maj 2015

Kurset gennemføres med teoretiske og praktiske lektioner, og har til formål, at give den enkelte deltager kendskab til ansvar og pligter i rollen som sikringsansvarlig for en facilitet.

Undervisningen genneføres inden for rammerne af International Ship and Port Facility Securuty koden (ISPS), EU direktiver og forordninger samt danske bekendtgørelser og love.

For tilmelding til kurset venligst kontakt Jens Madsen, MAHILUM eller Stefan Nonboe, Risk Intelligence
 
VH
MAHILUM og Risk Intelligence  

Briefing | 19 Feb 2015

The use of Nigerian Navy and Police with or without security advisors in private maritime security roles

(Photo: Dirk Steffen)

Risk Intelligence has updated its briefing paper on the use of government security forces in Nigeria by private companies. This update is in light of the detentions of three vessels by NIMASA in January 2015 on the grounds of the unauthorised use of armed and unarmed security advisers. Subsequent communications in the press have led to some confusion about the situation.

It is important to note that the recent detentions and arrests were not made in the context of an unarmed security advisor, but rather in the context of a foreign PMSC making use of armed government security forces in contravention of existing orders by the Flag Officer Western Naval Command and in contravention of the MoU by the Nigerian Navy with the PMSC. The 'unarmed' advisor was in fact rendering training and supervision for an embarked armed security team.

The briefing paper was first published on MaRisk, Risk Intelligence's subscription-based maritime security monitoring service.

The briefing paper comprehensively reviews the current situation in Nigeria and is available for download here on the Risk Intelligence website or via the link below.

Please contact Director Maritime Security Mr. Dirk Steffen for any questions. 

In the media | 11 Dec 2014

Increased security threat against Danes?

Politiken

The Saudi authorities have arrested three men in the aftermath of the attack against a Danish citizen employed in Saudi Arabia. According to the Danish Security and Intelligence Service (PET), those arrested are suspected of sympathizing with the terrorist organization Islamic State. The PET further underlines that the terrorist threat against Danish interests in the country embodies the overall strategy of the Islamic militants, where Western interests in the area are considered attractive targets.

Hans Tino Hansen, CEO at Risk Intelligence, points out that the sticking point in relation to Danish interests is whether the perpetrators were aware of the nationality of their target. The attack, if directed against westerners in general, represent nothing new – but if specifically directed against a Dane, such could indicate that Danes, and Danish interests, now are a top priority for IS-sympathizers.

For the full article in Danish, please see the link below:
http://politiken.dk/oekonomi/virksomheder/ECE2481579/pet-raadgiver-danske-firmaer-i-saudi-arabien-efter-dansker-angreb/



Update 12 December: The article was reissued in the light of new findings, please see the below link for the follow up in Danish:

http://politiken.dk/oekonomi/virksomheder/ECE2482071/arla-var-advaret-foer-skudattentat/ 

In the media | 04 Dec 2014

Up close with the Indonesian pirates

Søfart

In the work of investigating how much of the Indonesian pirate activities that went unreported, Risk Intelligences’ expert on Southeast Asia came in close touch with pirates in the Singapore Strait and the South China Sea. This relation presented the analyst with a firsthand view on how, and when, the pirates began to change their operational patterns - from having focused on hijacking smaller boats, they began to increasingly focus on palm oil and other petroleum products for resale.

The resale of stolen petroleum products have since then become increasingly advanced and internationalized. The analyst came in contact with a pirate group that had hijacked a ship in the South China Sea, transferred its palm oil to a barge and sailed it to the Singapore Straits. Here, the load was transferred to a larger tanker bound for Europe, thus mixing it with legal palm oil. In this particular case, the stolen products were sold on the open market in Rotterdam as legal palm oil.

Though this case represents the standard modus operandi, it was the first time that the analyst had seen it being associated with Europe. This is also the closest the pirates have come to the international shipping world just yet, as they previously have sought to stay below the radar of international attention.



For the full article in Danish, see the link below (subscription needed):

http://www.soefart.dk/?art=5771 

In the media | 04 Dec 2014

Only one in five hijackings are reported

Søfart

Risk Intelligence senior analyst estimates that only one of five hijackings in Southeast Asia are reported to local authorities. In a region where the average number of hijackings amount to one in every two weeks, the past year's increase in the numbers is expected to represent the tip of the iceberg. Furthermore, due to a conscious approach by the pirates, seeking to avoid international attention by hijacking ships for the sole purpose of stealing their cargo, the vast majority of hijackings and cargo thefts in the region are expected to remain unregistered.



For the full article in Danish, see the link below (subscription needed):
http://soefart.dk/?art=5773 

In the media | 02 Dec 2014

Monjasa and Trafigura dominate West Africa bunker market

Shippingwatch

A big part of the ship traffic in West Africa - notorious for hijackings and bunker quality fraud as well as insufficient volumes of delivered bunker - consists of tanker vessels transporting oil and chemical products in and out of the region. The deteriorating security situation, and particularly due to the significant risk of assaults and hijackings, have however caused numerous companies to give up on delivering bunker fuel in West Africa.

There are only a few small Asian and local bunker companies left operating in the area in addition to Danish Monjasa and trading house Trafigura, whom now have secured a dominant position in the West African bunker market. Stena Oil, having withdrawn from operations in the region, does not rule out that the bunker company will return to the region if security is improved significantly in the area, and in Nigeria, in particular.

There is a very clear system concerning tanker hijackings according to Hans Tino Hansen, CEO at Risk Intelligence. The organized groups of criminals operating in West Africa have specialized in hijacking product tanker vessels and stealing the cargo, and the excess demand for certain products in Nigeria have only made the market increasingly lucrative.

For the full article, see the link below:

Shippingwatch 

In the media | 29 Nov 2014

Piracy in Africa: The ungoverned seas

The Economist


Just a few years ago the most dangerous waters in the world were off the coast of Somalia, now it is the Gulf of Guinea that is the worst piracy hotspot. Incidents off West Africa have stretched all the way from the Ivory Coast to Angola, but the root of the problem is tied to Nigeria and its dysfunctional oil industry and violent politics of the Niger Delta.

Widespread bunkering and a violent insurgency created the conditions for piracy to flourish. There tend to be spikes in both bunkering and maritime criminality before elections, which indicates that politicians are using illicit means to finance themselves and pilfering is thus expected to rise as Nigeria’s presidential vote nears in February. Mr. Hans Tino Hansen, CEO at Risk Intelligence, points out that the ransoms are being used for the election campaigns through a “feudal system”, in which politicians protect pirates in return for a cut of their profits. An added problem is that elections may divert the attention of the security agencies.

For the full article, see the link below:
http://www.economist.com/news/middle-east-and-africa/21635049-waters-around-somalia-are-calmer-piracy-west-africa-rising 

In the media | 28 Nov 2014

A systemized approach to tanker hijackings

Shippingwatch

Smaller tankers are at great risk of being targeted by pirates off West Africa and Mr. Hans Tino Hansen, CEO at Risk Intelligence, highlights the systemized approach towards hijackings and armed robberies off West Africa.

The highly lucrative and systemized business model draws upon a triangular trade in the Gulf of Guinea, emanating particularly from Nigeria, in which the hijacked tanker is sailed to a position where a second tanker, chartered by the syndicate, is waiting. The diesel or fuel oil is then transferred from the hijacked tanker through a STS transfer before entering the Nigerian market where the stolen products are sold with high gain. The systemized approach renders the attacks highly profitable, and the pirates can gain between two and eight million USD for a weeklong operation.

So far there have been four successful hijackings this year, and there are currently several mother ships present in the area. Mr. Hansen points out that though not a growing problem, it is a problem that is continuously present and for which the outcome of the Nigerian elections in February are expected to have a direct impact on. There is a possibility a renewed violent spiral if a candidate from the North is chosen compared to the consequences of re-electing Mr. Goodluck Jonathan, who will be expected to do more to solve the problem.

For the full article in Danish, see the link below (subscription needed):
http://shippingwatch.dk/secure/Rederier/Tanker/article7244073.ece
 

In the media | 20 Nov 2014

Tanker hijackings in South East Asia

Søfart weekly

The advanced business model of Indonesian pirates

When commenting on the sophisticated, and highly successful, business model of the Indonesian pirates Mr. Hans Tino Hansen, CEO of Risk Intelligence, highlights that the Indonesian pirates are far more effective than its African counterparts if measured in yields per day.  The business model of hijacking tankers and siphoning their oil, have been refined to the point where the pirates can earn a $2 million profit for only a few days’ work.

Mr. Hansen further points out that the lack of international media attention is not coincident, but rather resulting from deliberate calculations made by the Indonesian pirates. By mainly attacking regional ships, rather than the international merchant fleet, the pirates have remained below the radar of international attention - hence able to keep with the momentum of their lucrative business model in Southeast Asia.

For the full article in Danish, see the link below (subscription needed):
http://www.soefart.dk/?art=5679

Higher gas prices caused increased threat of tanker hijackings in Southeast Asia

A record number of hijackings have been reported in Southeast Asia during 2014 – a sharp increase from previous year where only three hijackings were reported. This increase is likely to be further escalated by the announced price increase of petrol and diesel in Indonesia which, all things being equal, is likely to cause a spike in the number hijackings according to Mr. Hans Tino Hansen, CEO at Risk Intelligence.

The Indonesian orchestrated tanker hijackings typically follow a refined business model in which the fuel is stolen from the hijacked tanker through a quick STS operation and then sold for about 60-80 percent of market price. A 30 percent increase in the petrol price will thus present an even stronger incentive for the pirates.

That the targeted ships so far have been smaller, locally owned, product tankers at low speed is not a result of lacking abilities, but rather due to a lack of inside information as well as an aversion to attack international vessels that can cause greater media attention. This picture may drastically change if the syndicates were to gain information on other targets in the fairway while also choosing to ignore the accompanying international interest – a development which have been seen in Nigeria after the first tanker hijacking in 2010.

For the full article in Danish, see the link below (Subscription needed):
http://www.soefart.dk/?art=5678 ;

In the media | 16 Nov 2014

Chasing West Africa’s Pirates

BBC World Service


Risk Intelligence Director of Maritime Security, Mr. Dirk Steffen, contributed and advised Ms. Mary Harper, on behalf of BBC World Service, in the production of the documentary “Chasing West Africa’s Pirates”.

While piracy in Somalia have taken a plunge in recent years, piracy in the Gulf of Guinea have extended its reach and become increasingly deadly. Piracy in the Gulf of Guinea has now been termed one of the world’s worst, and most violent, piracy hot spot by the International Maritime Bureau and the documentary tells the story of seafarers’ being caught up in violent piracy attacks and former militants committing acts of piracy. The lack of governmental resources in preventing piracy in Nigeria have caused a surge in governmentally employed private security companies in the region – a lucrative market that is not without its quandaries. The documentary concludes by examining the economic cost of piracy, both to communities depending on maritime trade and to the maritime industry itself and Ms. Harper concludes that “all of us are paying the price [of piracy] but the highest price of all is paid by the seafarers.”

The one hour BBC radio documentary Chasing West Africa’s Pirates was broadcasted 15-16 November on the BBC World Service. The documentary, and the following podcast, can be found on the below links:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p02bbxb2

http://www.bbc.co.uk/podcasts/series/docarchive 

In the media | 14 Oct 2014

Why Nigeria’s election year may see a spike in pirate attacks

The Washington Post

Pirate attacks in West Africa’s Gulf of Guinea are increasing as Nigeria gears up for the general elections scheduled for February. Mr. Hans Tino Hansen, CEO at Risk Intelligence, explains that ransoms from hijacked ships and revenues from oil theft commonly are used to fuel the campaigns. The relationship between elections and piracy in Nigeria is similar to a ‘feudal system’, and politicians have been accused of covering up and protecting pirates in exchange for a cut of their revenue, which then is used to finance election campaigns.

Large revenues can be made in the Gulf of Guinea, and what happens in Nigeria, Africa’s most populous country, can have an enormous regional impact. Data collected by Risk Intelligence indicates that Nigerian piracy accounts for 71 percent of all incidents in West Africa, and the methods used by Nigerian pirates are highly profitable. Pirates that succeed to hijack a product tanker and transfer the cargo into another tanker may earn up to $6 to $8 million in a weeklong operation – potentially generating as much as $30 million per year for pirates and militants.

For the full article, see the below link:
http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/worldviews/wp/2014/10/14/why-nigerias-election-year-may-see-a-spike-in-pirate-attacks/ 

Briefing | 11 Sep 2014

Ebola briefing for maritime operations in West Africa

Copenhagen


Risk Intelligence has produced a briefing on the situation regarding Ebola in West Africa with a focus on shipping and maritime operations. It is available for download on this webpage.

The fact file examines the current Ebola virus disease (EVD) situation regionally and nationally in the greater West Africa region. It also examines the latest guidelines by international bodies and highlights any potential challenges. The coastal states spanning from Senegal to Angola are addressed in this report totalling 19 countries and updates will be conducted on a fortnightly basis. The contact number and emails are provided with the World Health Organization (WHO) liaison facility in each respective country below, as well as any collaborative focal point centres specifically dealing with EVD. The collaborative centres are testing facilities and research centres that are addressing containment and other specific medical issues. 

Press release | 20 Aug 2014

Conference: Maritime Crime and the Effects on Growth and Development in the African Region 7 October 2014

Copenhagen


Throughout the last decade, maritime crime and not least piracy, armed robbery and hijackings have imposed substantial cost and used up a vast amount of resources in the maritime industry. Furthermore, these criminals are a constant threat to the crew and vessels essential to the world trade.

The potential growth in the maritime industry have been reduced by ingenuous villains with limited technical knowledge, limited seamanship skills and limited resources. Mitigation efforts are often reactive to the crimes committed and periodically the pirates and criminals have held the initiative. However, as some opportunities fade, new possibilities and growth markets arise.

To challenge the criminals of today and tomorrow and to seek new approaches to maritime security challenges we will host a seminar titled:  ‘Maritime Crime and the Effects on Growth and Development in the African Region’

Risk Intelligence, together with the Danish Shipowner’s Association and Oceans Beyond Piracy, supported by Danish shipowner Clipper, will host the seminar in Copenhagen during Danish Maritime Days on 7 October 2014.

This seminar will focus on how the shipping industry, the international community and African countries can work together to foster maritime security and economic growth and development.

Please visit the seminar’s webpage for an up-to-date agenda here Danish Maritime Days. Please remind that confirmation of your participation should be send no later than 26 September 2014 to the following address: bmn@shipowners.dk. If you have any questions regarding this event, please do not hesitate to contact us.

About Danish Maritime Days:
Danish Maritime Days is a major new event for the global maritime industry. It will bring together a broad spectrum of leaders from across the industry with the objective to find new solutions to the most important challenges facing the industry today and in the future. With many events – including conferences, briefings, exhibitions, symposia, company visits, receptions and dinners – planned throughout the week of 6-10 October 2014 – Danish Maritime Days will be an opportunity to meet peers from around the world, to make new connections, to be inspired and to pave the way for new partnerships. More information at: http://www.danishmaritimedays.com/ 

Press release | 25 Jun 2014

Hijacking for product theft in South East Asia is business as usual

Vedbaek


Well-established local criminal syndicate diversifying its targets rather than undertaking new operations says Denmark-based security advisory and intelligence company Risk Intelligence.

The recent hijacking cases of coastal product tankers in South East Asia for the theft of their cargoes represents a diversification of the threat rather than a new trend.

“It’s a case of new diesel in old tankers,” says the CEO of Risk Intelligence, Hans Tino Hansen. “This type of piracy for product theft evolved in South East Asia and we’ve been following these sorts of cases and some of the syndicates involved for a number of years.”

Hijacking for product theft can be documented as far back as 1990s in South East Asia. The most active syndicate has usually favoured boarding the pre-selected targets in the same general location and always during the region’s dry season between March and October. 

‘’We believe that the majority of these incidents can be traced to a particular (and well-established) group based in the immediate area,” says Special Projects Manager and South East Asia analyst for Risk Intelligence, Karsten von Hoesslin. “They are diversifying in the product type they are stealing. If anything, this indicates their network is expanding within the illicit oil products market. But otherwise, with respect to modus operandi and patterns, it’s business as usual.’’ 

Risk Intelligence’s forecasts since 2011 have warned of an increase of reported hijackings for product theft in the South China Sea based on this seasonal pattern. Both the Johor and Miri coasts have been particularly highlighted as high risk regions.

 ‘’Despite the increase in activity and recent advisories, the vessels targeted are almost always pre-selected – suggesting an ‘inside man’ element to them – and solely targeting regionally managed and flagged tankers,’’ says von Hoesslin.  

Field surveys carried out by Risk Intelligence during the 2013 dry season revealed hijackings targeting both product tankers and tug and barges occurring approximately every fortnight in the South China and Java Seas by at least four well placed syndicates.  

Risk Intelligence has been analysing South East Asia piracy since 2006 based on extensive field surveys in the region.


For further information please contact:

Karsten von Hoesslin, Special Projects Manager, kvh@riskintelligence.eu

Hans Tino Hansen, CEO, hth@riskintelligence.eu 

A Tribute | 15 Apr 2014

Remembering the gifted field investigators Clément Gorrissen and Simon Davis

By Karsten von Hoesslin, Special Projects Manager, Risk Intelligence


On 7 April 2014, UNODC Consultants Simon Davis and Clément Gorrissen were fatally shot upon arrival in the immigration hall at Galkayo airport in central Somalia. The city of Galkayo, also known as a financial hub for piracy investors, is split between Puntland and Galmudug and its airport sits on the Puntland side of the border town, which has witnessed significant clan violence since late 2012 between conflicting Galmudug and Puntland militias.


The pair were in the process of meeting Somali government representatives from both Puntland and Galmudug State to discuss banking compliance and asset tracking with respect to proceeds deriving from Somali pirate ransoms. Whilst in the arrival hall awaiting immigration clearance, a uniformed police officer opened fire on the two consultants at close range wounding them fatally. Although initial claims have been made that the police officer suffered from ‘mental issues,’ the Somali government has launched an ‘investigative panel’ to determine the motive for the attack.

Simon Davis and I first crossed paths in 2009 at a piracy conference in London where he blew the audience away with his expert knowledge on illicit cash flows detailing the Somali Hawala system to perfection. It should not come as a surprise that two years later when I first met Clément at a UNODC-sponsored conference in Nairobi, I suggested that he and Simon connect to discuss the project that Clément was about to spearhead. They were the perfect team and have since provided a non-stop ground breaking contribution to the field of piracy and illicit cash flows.

At that conference in Kenya, Clément wittingly put me on the spot asking that I speak to the audience about my work tracking South East Asian organised crime syndicates as well as elaborate on a Risk Intelligence piracy database. At the time, Risk Intelligence was compiling its own special database on Somali pirate leaders, investors, and government personnel linked to the illicit business. Both Clément and I found an opportunity for collaboration and my and Risk Intelligence CEO Hans Tino Hansen’s relationship with Clément began to grow. Thereafter, Clément invited both Hans and I to high-level Contact Group meetings to give briefings on our work and mutual interests while Risk Intelligence hosted Clément at our headquarters in Vedbaek.

My relationship with Clément grew into a friendship. Although, upon reflection, we were more often like two passing ships in the night around the badlands of East Africa, we always had a secure channel of communication and marked hazards for one another along the way. Nevertheless, we did find ways to meet in the shadows of East African airports to enjoy a warm Tusker and compare notes before boarding flights in different directions. Clément was a master of operational security and could be trusted with anything, whether it was to help identify photographs of suspects involved in a hostage case I was handling or being aware of specific East African government personnel ‘on the take’ who we both kept a watchful (and often hesitant) eye on.

Simon was also a wealth of information pertaining to the Horn. He gave me the most accurate travel advice on Somaliland which included not only safe transit routes, housing, and medical facilities, but where to find the best cured goat dishes and of course, the most ideal exchange rates.

Upon learning of both Clément and Simon’s tragic deaths, it has been a non-stop investigation into my notes and correspondence looking for clues as to how this happened. But in truth, I now wish more then ever that I made the time for Clément’s invitations to attend recent conferences and enjoy one more coffee and conversation with both him and Simon.

Clément’s leading contribution to the field was Pirate Trails: Tracking the Illicit Financial Flows from Pirate Activities off the Horn of Africa. But the truth is that this was merely the tip of the iceberg, because he would have had a long and successful career investigating and tackling organised crime. Having shared his PhD plans with me, Clément truly had a gift for thinking out of the box and developing methodologies to uncover the darker secrets of organised crime that would otherwise remain unchecked.

Returning to being put on the spot at that conference in Nairobi, ironically, it was Clément’s impromptu curve ball and our side-line discussions that led to a significant change in my perception on Somali piracy, which also encouraged my quest to become more specialized and better qualified in the fields of forensics, interviewing and interrogation as well as psychological first aid. I truly owe him one for pushing my skillset- and in the right direction!

Clément was perhaps a closer friend to me then I have yet to realise as we individually trekked into the unknown with the best possible risk mitigation strategies yet still exposed to unpredictable threats. I can sense that he will forever remind me of both the passion in high-risk investigating and of the things we should hold close to our hearts when either at home amongst loved ones or in the remote darkness.

The last time we were all together was in an English pub with fellow colleagues who also knew them very well. We toasted, laughed and appreciated conversations twice removed from pirates and ransoms and were able to simply kick back and become closer colleagues.

Neither Simon nor Clément shall be forgotten and those who had the privilege of working with them will always remember how meaningful their contributions were and know that they had so much more to give.

To the lost! 

Press release | 02 Apr 2014

Risk Intelligence strengthens its business with the acquisition of CUSTOS

Vedbaek

The Denmark-based security advisory and intelligence company Risk Intelligence has acquired the Danish security advisory firm CUSTOS. The acquisition will result in a widening and strengthening of Risk Intelligence expertise for shipowners, offshore, oil & gas as well as ports & terminals

Full spectrum provider
“The acquisition is part of our growth strategy and Risk Intelligence will now be one of the very few providers in the global market that is fully capable of advising clients with security challenges within the full spectrum of supply chain management and maritime security” says Mr. Hans Tino Hansen, Managing Director & CEO of Risk Intelligence.

The new business area Ports & Terminals makes Risk Intelligence able to cover all four areas: Shipping, Offshore, Oil & Gas, Ports & Terminals and Land.

“The addition of CUSTOS’ vast experience and know how within the ports and terminals security area, combined with the increase of the existing expertise on shipping and offshore, is important for Risk Intelligence to deliver full-spectrum security advice that our clients increasingly demand,” says Hans Tino Hansen.

CUSTOS, which since 2005 has advised a range of industry and maritime clients, will be integrated into Risk Intelligence and Mr. Stefan Nonboe will join the management as Project Director.

A strong partnership
“The synergy has been apparent to us from when we started discussing merging our activities. We have had a good and close cooperation for a number of years and Risk Intelligence has provided intelligence to a number of CUSTOS cases,” says CUSTOS Managing Director Mr. Henrik Mundt. The response and crisis management activities will be continued in an independent company headed by Henrik Mundt.

“Our close relationship will continue as it is central to us to be able to cooperate on intelligence in connection with our response activities,” says Henrik Mundt.

Risk Intelligence:
Risk Intelligence is specialised in security advisory services and intelligence analysis of threats from piracy, organised crime, terrorism, insurgency and military conflicts. Risk Intelligence clients in more than 20 countries operate more than 12% of the world fleet.

Contact
Hans Tino Hansen, Managing Director & CEO Risk Intelligence +45 70 26 62 30 

Press release | 07 Nov 2013

Pole Star and Risk Intelligence announce strategic partnership

London

Pole Star Space Applications, a leading provider of realtime asset tracking and monitoring solutions, and Risk Intelligence, a security and piracy intelligence specialist, have today announced their strategic partnership.

The companies are working to integrate several solutions, allowing mutual customers to combine the benefits of realtime fleet information with the latest intelligence on piracy and security incidents around the world. The first product will be launched Q1 2014.

“There is a natural synergy between what we do (offering customers fleet information they can use to make decisions quickly) and what Risk Intelligence do (providing maritime companies with the latest intelligence on the location, details and assessment of piracy and security incidents),” said Andrew Peters, CEO at Pole Star. “By combining tracking and piracy intelligence in a single system, we can give our customers more meaningful information that they can use to make decisions quickly.”

“We first collaborated with Pole Star in 2009,” said Hans Tino Hansen, Managing Director & CEO at Risk Intelligence. “Since then our relationship has evolved, and we are pleased to announce today that we will join forces in a strategic partnership to offer our mutual customers some powerful new features.”

“We think our mutual customers will enjoy the benefits that this partnership will bring,” continued Mr. Hansen. “By combining the information that our two companies provide, we can offer something very valuable indeed – actionable intelligence for the routing of ships to avoid current or predicted hotspots.”

For more information, please visit:

Pole Star - www.polestarglobal.com
Tel: +44 (0)20 7313 7400

Risk Intelligence - www.riskintelligence.eu
Tel: +45 70 26 62 30

  

Press Release | 09 Oct 2013

Risk Intelligence Gulf of Guinea tanker hijacking report


Today, Risk Intelligence has launched the Gulf of Guinea tanker report at a special security seminar organised by the Norwegian Shipowners and the Norwegian Mutual War Risk Association, who also have been supporting the project.

Pirate networks in the Gulf of Guinea are focusing on product theft from tankers and this relatively new type of crime has evolved into a unique and highly lucrative form of maritime crime in the region. In the first eight months of 2013, some 19 attacks took place against vessels operating in the region. There were 25 such attacks in 2012.

This form of piracy has become very costly. An estimated 117,000mt of product worth approximately $100 million has been stolen since 2010. The human cost of the pirate attacks is also significant. Two crew members on product tankers have been killed and at least 34 have been injured in hijacking related incidents.

“The Gulf of Guinea tanker hijacking report is the first real effort to describe the perpetrators of these tanker hijackings and how companies have dealt with these incidents in order to improve existing countermeasures,” says Risk Intelligence CEO Hans Tino Hansen. “Understanding the networks in the area that support these hijackings is crucial for planning and preparation.”

The report is based on primary sources of information from the region and interviews with shipping companies that have experienced an attempted or actual hijacking.

“We combined all the strengths of Risk Intelligence into one systematic analysis,” explains Hansen. “We have been reporting and analysing these incidents for years, but we added in a significant level of detail from field studies in Nigeria – absolutely essential for understanding what is going on there.”

As a result, the report provides background, analysis and recommendations, and is focused on practical measures that can be implemented by operators in the region.

Detailed recommendations are outlined in the report for shipping companies and crews of product and chemical tankers trading in the area. The recommendations are considered alongside existing guidelines for maritime security, such as the ISPS code and the Best Management Practices (BMP), as well as the interim guidance published by several industry stakeholders.

“The perpetrators have a working template for successful hijackings,” according to Hansen. “And this is not a problem that international naval intervention can solve. Companies operating in the Gulf of Guinea need to take preventative steps at every level of their operations.”

Due to the commercial sensitivities of the companies described in the report the report is only available to Risk Intelligence clients and to selected industry members and stakeholders. Please contact Risk Intelligence for further information. 

Press Release | 12 Jun 2013

Risk Intelligence launches Advisory Board


The maritime security intelligence company Risk Intelligence is joined by six experienced leaders in the maritime industry, who will serve as the company’s board of advisors. The board is led by the former fleet commander of the Royal Navy, Admiral Sir James Burnell-Nugent. The board held its first meeting in London on 11 June 2013.

“The six members bring a staggering amount of experience into the board, from navies, shipping companies, offshore, oil and gas, and classification societies. We are very grateful that they have accepted to join us”, says Hans Tino Hansen, CEO of Risk Intelligence.

Risk Intelligence has set up the advisory board to strengthen the strategic outlook and develop the company.

“This is a great opportunity to strengthen the strategic development of Risk Intelligence. This advisory board brings together fresh input and senior cross-sector experience. We are all very pleased with the contribution of the board that has been assembled”, says Sir James Burnell-Nugent.

Risk Intelligence provides services to the shipping, offshore, oil and gas and insurance sectors, as well as government agencies and defence departments in more than 20 countries. The company is described as one of the world leaders within maritime-related security intelligence, with its clients operating more than 12% of the world fleet.

The board consists of the following members:

• Admiral Sir James Burnell-Nugent, former Commander-in-Chief Fleet, Royal Navy - Chairman

• Vice Admiral Kevin Cosgriff, (Rtd), US Navy, former Commander NAVCENT

• Rear Admiral Torben Orting Jorgensen, (Rtd) , Royal Danish Navy, General Manager, Maersk Broker

• Rear Admiral Pieter Kok, (Rtd), former commander Dutch Surface Fleet, Royal Netherlands Navy

• Captain (N) Thomas Weik, (Rtd), US Navy, former Senior Surveyor, Det Norske Veritas (DNV)

• Captain David Cotterell, Managing Director, OCIMF

Member bios as well as pictures can be found here

Presentation | 17 May 2013

Risk Intelligence presents "Piracy's unending threat"

Executive presentation at Break Bulk Europe in Antwerp highlighted specific threats to the Multi Purpose Vessel operators

On 16 May 2013 Risk Intelligence's Chief Analyst Nis Leerskov Mathiesen gave an Executive presentation for attendants at the Break Bulk Europe conference.

The current development of Kidnap/Ransom tactics off Nigeria is of particular interest for companies operating Multi Purpose Vessels as these are disproportionately represented in the area and are actively targeted.

On the Horn of Africa, the piracy threat has definitely declined and although the pirate infrastructure remains in place, there are several opportunities for moving Break Bulk cargo in the region.

The presentation can be seen here

Seminar | 12 Mar 2013

Copenhagen Customer seminar

Risk Intelligence organised a successful customer seminar for Danish and Swedish customers

Risk Intelligence has held a customer seminar in Gentofte, Copenhagen for a group of Danish and Swedish clients, which included both private and government sectors.
 
The seminar included an update on the Horn of Africa, on North Africa and Middle East as well as on West Africa. Furthermore, due dilligence of PMSCs were discussed and the day ended with a workshop on Best Management Practices for West Africa based on Risk Intelligence's Best Practices document from late Summer 2012. All participants agreed that the BMP from Horn of Africa does not apply to West Africa and an operations-focused BMP is needed in this area.

Each year Risk Intelligence organises customer seminars in various countries. The seminars have been organised since 2005 in Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Germany, The Netherlands, Greece, Singapore and in the UK.

The first coming up are in Norway and in Germany. These seminars are by invitation only. 

Press release | 28 Feb 2013

Piracy legislation does not guarantee proper planning

A proposed change to the Danish Seafarers’ legislation will mean that companies are mandated to prepare for a hijacking situation beforehand.

The Danish-based maritime security intelligence company Risk Intelligence believes seafarers and shipping companies will benefit from having efficient contingency plans. But having a plan to meet legislation is not enough. Many contingency plans are never updated or rehearsed.

“The ability to actually execute the plan is the key. Such a plan is only efficient when revised and rehearsed on a regular basis. Both planning and execution should involve the individual stakeholders in person in order to practice teamwork and identify deficiencies in the plan”, says Henrik Ehlers Kragh, Corporate Risk Projects Manager in Risk Intelligence.

He points out that such a plan should include all internal and external stakeholders and describe their roles, responsibilities and practical procedures in detail. Such a contingency plan for a hijacking situation will speed up internal emergency procedures and subsequently negotiations.

“No plan can include all possible scenarios and no matter how good the plan is, it will need to be adapted to the situation at hand. Knowledge of the plan, of the stakeholders and of the procedures will speed up the emergency team’s ability to adapt the plan to the incident and subsequently make the company ready for negotiations faster”, says Henrik Ehlers Kragh.

He adds that legislation on this matter may be a good way to ensure a standard level of formal preparation. 

Press release | 11 Jan 2013

Risk Intelligence appoints new Corporate Risk Projects Manager

Henrik Ehlers Kragh joins Risk Intelligence


Risk Intelligence has announced the appointment of Henrik Ehlers Kragh as Corporate Risks Projects Manager based out of the main office in Vedbaek, Denmark.

Henrik will be responsible for coordinating Risk Intelligence corporate initiatives and managing client projects across business areas. He will also be responsible for a number of business development and client relations initiatives. Initially, Henrik will be responsible for conducting our 2013 customer survey in order for Risk Intelligence to better understand our customers’ current needs and requirements.

“We are happy to welcome Henrik Ehlers Kragh as Corporate Risk Projects Manager in Risk Intelligence. He will add significant experience both from the military, civilian think tank and from commercial shipping operations“ says Hans Tino Hansen, CEO of Risk Intelligence.

Before joining Risk Intelligence Henrik was Head of Anti-Piracy Coordination in Maersk Line and he has been working with complex maritime risk and security issues since early 2007.

Before retiring from the Danish Army as a major Henrik held a number of command and staff positions, among other as an analyst at the Danish Institute for International Studies (DIIS) and as Military Assistant to the Queen of Denmark. Beside risk and security, Henrik’s career also covers areas such as military support to capacity building and disaster & conflict assistance. Further, Henrik has served in several international missions.

Henrik has graduated the Joint General Staff Course at the Royal Danish Defence College and holds an international master in Disaster Management from Copenhagen and Lund universities.

A more detailed CV on Henrik may be found on LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/pub/dir/Henrik/Kragh 

Press release | 09 Jan 2013

Nigerian criminals most innovative pirates in 2013

Pirate activity in West Africa saw a slight decline in 2012. But Nigerian pirates will increasingly pose the most diverse threat to international shipping in 2013.


“West African piracy is far more complex than piracy in the Indian Ocean. It combines the threats of armed robbery, kidnap-and-ransom and short-duration hijackings. Some Nigerian groups are well-organised, have significant local backing and are very innovative in developing new forms of highly profitable piracy. So despite that we’re not seeing an increase in number of attacks, it’s no surprise that Nigerian piracy is currently keeping many shipping companies awake at night”, says Analyst Thomas Horn Hansen, Risk Intelligence.

Risk Intelligence recorded a total of 89 attacks in the West African region in 2012. This is a slight drop from the 116 incidents reported the year before.

Despite the decline, West Africa is fast becoming a key concern for global shipping. Since late 2010, Nigeria-based pirate groups have targeted product tankers carrying refined products such as diesel in order to steal the cargo and put in for sale on the local black market. Risk Intelligence has recorded 78 attempted attacks on product tankers and 27 short-duration hijackings since December 2010.

“West African pirates tend to use a high level of violence against crew and there are not many countermeasures that can be used by the shipping industry. Shipping companies cannot always rely on local security forces and local laws place constraints on the use of private security companies across the region, making it difficult to tackle the problem”, says Thomas Horn Hansen.

“We have seen some government efforts to crack down on organised piracy in 2012, particularly in Nigeria, but the problem still appears to be spreading in the region. Although piracy in West Africa is still at a lower level than a few years back, it is not clear how either governments or the shipping industry can effectively address the problem in the near future”, says Thomas Horn Hansen. 

Press release | 13 Dec 2012

Risk Intelligence reduces size of its Horn of Africa High Risk Area

The maritime security intelligence company Risk Intelligence has reduced its Horn of Africa High Risk Area for the first time since 2007. The reduction of the High Risk Area is done to reflect the current decline of Somali pirate activity.

“When Somali piracy expanded it was easy enough. High risk areas were drawn up, further and further from the coast. But with the reduction in the frequency of attacks, we assessed that now was the time to start taking the consequences of that and reduce the area in an intelligent way”, says Nis Leerskov Mathiesen, Chief Analyst in Risk Intelligence.

Risk Intelligence’s analysts have looked at all the areas of the wider Horn of Africa region and analysed in each of them, in order to assess where the High Risk Area should be reduced and where it should be preserved. Pirate, merchant marine and navy activity was all factored in.

“The revision is not based only on the declining numbers of attacks that are apparent to all. But it is rooted in the experience and expertise of the Risk Intelligence team of analysts and consultants and draws on statistical incident information, intelligence from local sources and systematic forecasting of the short and medium term”, says Nis Leerskov Mathiesen.

The most substantial change in the MaRisk Horn of Africa High Risk Area is that it now has its eastern border from Diu Head in India to Minicoy Island. This excludes a stretch of the Indian coast.

The Risk Intelligence High Risk Area is drawn up in the online maritime threat monitor MaRisk (www.marisk.dk) and is not similar to the official High Risk Area designated in the Best Management Practices (BMP). The MaRisk High Risk Area is identifies a “substantial higher risk of attacks”. This means that it does not guarantee that there is no risk outside the area.

“It is very important to understand that although the likelihood of an attack might be significantly lower outside the designated High Risk Area, the chances of pirate success and the outcome of both failed and successful attacks are still the same”, says Nis Leerskov Mathiesen.

The High Risk Area and the current threats that have defined it are described in the latest issue of the series of maritime security reports Strategic Insights (www.strategicinsights.eu). 

Hamburg | 07 Sep 2012

Risk Intelligence concludes successful SMM exhibition

SMM Hamburg


Click on photo to see more.

Risk Intelligence concluded a successful SMM exhibition in Hamburg Friday 7 September 2012, where we managed to meet both a large selection of our German clients as well as companies which showed interest in our services.

Also, importantly, the week gave a good opportunity to meet with business partners and discuss future developments. 

Hamburg | 22 Jun 2012

Meet Risk Intelligence at SMM 4-7 September 2012

Stand 101 in Hall B8

Risk Intelligence is proud to announce that we will be having a stand at the international shipping exhibition SMM in Hamburg 4-7 September 2012.

The company will be presenting its products and services from stand 101 in the hall B8 Maritime Security & Defence. We are looking forward to launch new products and present important new developments in Risk Intelligence.

We are hoping to meet many new people as well as our existing clients during the week in Hamburg.

Visit the SMM Hamburg webpage 

Vedbaek | 21 Jun 2012

Pirate swarm attacks is a myth

Press release

Every summer shipping companies are warned about large swarms of pirate boats off the Horn of Africa. The warnings are based on reports from ships in the area and put out by security companies and governments. The only problem is that pirate swarms do not exist, according to the Danish intelligence company Risk Intelligence.

“We have monitored these rather panicky reports since at least 2008, when a European Naval vessel reported swarms of up to 20 pirate skiffs. But it is a misunderstanding every year. The phenomenon can be understood and described as something else every time it is reported” says Nis Leerskov Mathiesen, Chief Analyst with Risk Intelligence.

The swarm attack reports always start coming out when the monsoon brings rough weather to large swaths of the Arabian Sea and Indian Ocean. This means that small boat traffic moves to more sheltered waters, most significantly fishermen and smugglers. Both these groups use small boats similar to those of the pirates. And both groups manoeuvre in ways that can frighten a master of a merchant vessel. Fishermen will move at high speed towards merchant vessels, either to protect their nets or to benefit from the wake and wash of a ship. Smugglers are often “jumping” from ship to ship at high speed to stay hidden from radar surveillance. Pirates are sometimes present in the area as well. They hide in larger groups of boats. They then attack and lookouts confuse background traffic with pirate accomplices.

“We have never seen any proof that an attack is carried out by more than a small handful of skiffs. So the repeating reports of 10 and 20 strong “swarms” is a question of wrong observation in the heat of the battle and short-sighted analysis by those who put out the warnings. The effect is fear mongering”, says Nis Leerskov Mathiesen.

Risk Intelligence is a Danish-based company that specialises in maritime security intelligence in support of shipping companies, navies and maritime organisations. You can read Risk Intelligence’s background briefing on Swarm Attacks on the right hand side of page. 

Vedbaek/London | 21 May 2012

Sir James Burnell-Nugent joins Risk Intelligence as Strategic Advisor

Admiral Sir James Burnell-Nugent KCB, CBE, formerly commander-in-chief Royal Navy and current director of Orchard Leadership, has joined Risk Intelligence as a Strategic Advisor.

Admiral Sir James Burnell-Nugent commanded a range of warships including the aircraft carrier Invincible in the British Royal Navy after achieving a Master’s Degree at Cambridge University, and concluded his career as full Admiral and Commander-in-Chief of the Fleet. He was knighted in 2004. He is a graduate of the Greenwich Joint Services Defence College and an Honorary Fellow of Corpus Christi College Cambridge.

CEO of Risk Intelligence Hans Tino Hansen comments “I am very pleased with having Sir James onboard as Strategic Advisor. His experience in leadership and operational background will provide an important contribution to the strategic development of the company. An important role will be to chair the Advisory Board”.

Sir James Burnell-Nugent comments “I am very pleased to be able to contribute to the exciting development of Risk Intelligence at a time of increasing global concerns with maritime security”.

Risk Intelligence is a security intelligence company providing intelligence products and intelligence-based advisory services to mainly shipping, oil & gas, offshore and other maritime-related companies as well as governmental clients. Today, Risk Intelligence supports the secure operation of more than 12% of the World shipping fleet as well as large parts of offshore operations globally.

If you require additional information, please contact the below or visit www.riskintelligence.eu

Any questions should be directed to:

Hans Tino Hansen              Managing Director & CEO +45 70 26 62 30 

Vedbaek | 09 Jan 2012

Maritime crime in Nigeria is alive and well

Risk Intelligence releases its annual analysis and forecast of the maritime security situation in Nigeria.

Nigerian piracy has not declined in 2011; it has merely moved elsewhere, according to analysis by the Denmark-based maritime security intelligence company Risk Intelligence.

For 2011, Risk Intelligence has recorded 70 Nigeria-related attacks against offshore oil & gas and against maritime targets – up from 58 attacks recorded for 2010. Nigerian criminals began to focus on product tankers in December 2010, when they attacked the Italian tanker VALLE DI CORDOBA off Cotonou. In 2011, they have attacked 30 tankers off Lagos, Lomé, and Cotonou and two more off the Niger Delta.

See the right hand side for the assessment. 

Vedbaek | 01 Dec 2011

New MaRisk tools will be launched 6 December 2011

Weather and optional voyage planning now included

New tools
MaRisk will soon be updated with new tools and functionalities.

  • Weather overlay: Show weather forecast data directly on the MaRisk map
  • Datum: Shows likely Somali pirate group attack ranges
  • Distance tool: Measure distances on the map
  • Report functionality: Send or download an overview of incidents in a given time-span
  • Voyage planner: Plot, share and import vessel routes

 

Vedbaek | 13 Aug 2011

Sponsor for Vedbæk Havnedag 21 August 2011

Risk Intelligence sponsors local event


Risk Intelligence sponsors the local event Vedbæk Havnedag on Sunday 21 August 2011. The event on the Vedbæk Marina connects local organisations, businesses and other for a day of activities in and around the harbour and marina.

With its focus on maritime security and its location 100m from the marina, Risk Intelligence has found it natural to support this excellent initiative.

During the day Risk Intelligence will have an exhibition stand to explain about our activities.

Follow Vedbæk Havnedag at the Facebook page
 

Briefing | 01 Mar 2011

Sailing ship hijackings 2008-2011

After the hijacking of the Danish yacht ING on 24 February 2011, Risk Intelligence outlines the background of yacht hijackings off Somalia.

Please find the briefing under "News", in the right hand corner under "Sailing boats 2011". 

Singapore | 07 Feb 2011

Interview with Karsten von Hoesslin

3rd Annual Breakbulk Asia Transportation Conference & Exhibition

Risk Intelligence Senior Analyst Karsten von Hoesslin is interviewed about the current piracy trends in this video from the 3rd Annual Breakbulk Asia Transportation Conference. 

Watch it here.

(The sound quality is very poor, unfortunately).  

Vedbaek | 26 Jan 2011

New movie on www.riskintelligence.eu

Case study of a pirate attack

Risk Intelligence is proud to present our new corporate movie on the front page of www.riskintelligence.eu

The movie details a case study of how a container vessel was attacked off East Africa and how Risk Intelligence's analysts and consultants were in support of the vessel and company. 

Over at www.marisk.dk a new movie is also available. It shows how the maritime threat monitor MaRisk works and how it can be used by shipping, oil, gas and offshore companies as well as navies, government organisations and others. 

Dubai | 17 Jan 2011

Somali Piracy Leaders

MARLO Conference Raffles Dubai


Managing Director & CEO Hans Tino Hansen gave a presentation on Somali piracy leaders and how they have developed from the early starters in the 1990s over the "entrepreneurs" in the early 2000s developing piracy and hijack for ransom as a "business model".

The majority of piracy leaders coming into piracy after 2008 have mostly emerged from the lieutenants of the first "entrepreneurs".

The main message of the presentation was that until the international forces fighting piracy understands that most of these leaders should be seen as dynamic "entrepreneurs", they will be able to maintain the initiative and constantly be one step ahead of the anti-piracy efforts. 

Copenhagen | 06 Jan 2011

Somali pirates extend their hunting season using mother ships

Free download in PDF Implications of Somali mother ships

The increased use of large hijacked cargo ships and trawlers as mother ships by Somali pirates is a “game changer.” Using hijacked ships and their kidnapped crew will let pirates operate despite the harsher weather during the winter monsoon. The maritime security consultancy Risk Intelligence has released an assessment of the consequences of this new strategy.

“Piracy off Somalia have traditionally tapered off during the monsoon, but with this new development, there might be no let-up in pirate attacks during this year’s winter monsoon” says Dirk Steffen, Director of consultancy in Risk Intelligence.

The assessment from Risk Intelligence finds that some of the implications of the new pirate tactics are:

  • Reduced dependency on seasons, currents and weather conditions
  • Increased range
  • Higher transit speeds
  • Mother ships used for direct attack
  • Threat of reprisal against captured crew of the hijacked vessels



“This provides the shipping industry and navies with a number of important security risk challenges, but also with some opportunities for combating piracy”, says Hans Tino Hansen, CEO of Risk Intelligence

Please download the assessment “Implications of the use of hijacked vessels by Somali pirates” on the right upper hand side of this page.

For any quesitons please contact Risk Intelligence +45 70 26 62 30 

Copenhagen | 03 Jan 2011

Nigeria 2011 Maritime security outlook

Free download in PDF Review of 2010 and Outlook for 2011

Piracy, militant attacks against oil infrastructure and other maritime security incidents in the Niger Delta and off Lagos are set to follow a pattern defined by the upcoming elections and the faltering amnesty.

Risk Intelligence's experts have compiled an assessments of the developments in 2010 and produced a forecast for 2011.

Please find Risk Intelligence’s forecast for maritime security in Nigeria 2011 for free download (PDF) on the upper right hand side (Grey download banner). 

News | 07 Dec 2010

New web page launched

Risk Intelligence launches new web page

Risk Intelligence has launched a new company web page today 7 December 2010. Together with the launch of a Strategic Insights web page, Risk Intelligence has now had a full overhaul of its entire web presence.

To learn more, contact Risk Intelligence MD Hans Tino Hansen. 

Also see MaRisk and Strategic Insights.   

Vedbaek | 12 Oct 2010

New webpage early December

Brand new and much more informative webpage will be launched

Risk Intelligence is in the process of finalising a brand new webpage. This will be much more informative and embed several media types in one platform including video and webcasts. 

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