North P&I Club has partnered with CSO Alliance — a fast- growing online community of maritime company security officers (CSOs) — to encourage its members to join and take part in security-related information sharing. In a first for the P&I (Protection & Indemnity) sector, all CSOs in North’s 131 million GT owned fleet will receive a 20% reduction in membership fees for the first year and North will subsidize a further 40%.

Founded in the UK in 2012, the CSO Alliance already has over 380 members responsible for security on more than 6,000 ships worldwide. Members have access to a comprehensive and authoritative real-time incident and attack database and can share information, opinions and best practice. The management team is in regular contact with key naval commands and maritime crime reporting centres, evolving a rapid, co-ordinated response capability.

North deputy loss prevention director Colin Gillespie says, “North supports the concept of information sharing on security- related risks, both physical and cyber. As such we believe membership of the CSO Alliance will offer real benefits to CSOs employed by our members, so we have negotiated a subsidized rate for their first year of membership.”

CSO Alliance managing director Mark Sutcliffe says, “North has long been one of the most innovative and forward-thinking P&I clubs and we welcome their support. They join BIMCO, the International Chamber of Shipping and numerous national shipowner associations and security suppliers in supporting our mission to build a scalable, adaptable and durable coalition against organized crime.”

North says membership of the CSO Alliance will assist individual CSOs in the prevention of criminal attacks against their ships, including from piracy, stowaways and fraud. “The sharing of security information, opinions and views in a closed, community- based online forum will aid operational efficiency too,” says Gillespie. “For example, access to maritime crime data allows port risk assessments to be produced more cost-effectively.” With maritime cyber security moving further up the regulatory agenda, North says the CSO Alliance also provides an ideal forum for CSOs to explore and discuss the technological issues relating to this new area of fraud and operational disruption. “Above all we believe membership of the CSO Alliance will increase knowledge and assist professional development of CSOs through international workshops, video conferencing, newsletters and online information exchange.”

North P&I Club is a leading global marine insurer providing P&I, FD&D, war risks and ancillary insurance to 131 million GT of owned tonnage. Through its guaranteed subsidiary Sunderland Marine, North is also a major insurer of fishing vessels, small craft and aquaculture risks. The Standard and Poor’s ‘A’ rated club is based in Newcastle upon Tyne, UK with regional offices in Greece, Hong Kong, Japan and Singapore and Sunderland Marine offices worldwide. North is a leading member of the International Group of P&I Clubs (IG), with 11.5% of the IG's owned tonnage. The 13 IG clubs provide liability cover for approximately 90% of the world's ocean-going tonnage and, as a member of the IG, North protects and promotes the interests of the international shipping industry.

CSO Alliance is an international online community of maritime company security officers (CSOs) run by an experienced, CSO-qualified management team based in Waddesdon, Buckinghamshire, UK. It provides a global, members-only risk management platform for all shipping sectors, helping CSOs to drive best practice and fight organized crime. Founded in 2012, the CSO Alliance has over 380 members from throughout the world who manage the security of more than 6,000 ships of all types. Members, who pay an annual fee of £250, have access to a comprehensive and authoritative real-time incident and attack database and can share information, opinions and learning for mutual benefit.