GISTnet IAC Air Cargo Security Training FAQs

IAC (Air Forwarder) Security Responsibilities

Who establishes and enforces air cargo security responsibilities?
In the U.S., the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) does this pursuant to a combination of published regulations (49 CFR) and unpublished (need-to-know) Security Directives and Information Circulars.
What security responsibilities does an IAC have based on published regulations?
Among other things, an IAC must:
  1. Adopt and implement a TSA-approved air cargo security program (refer to 49 CFR 1548.5).
  2. Ensure that its employees and agents (e.g., truckers) carry out the requirements of its security program and otherwise comply with TSA air cargo security regulations when handling cargo that will subsequently be tendered to a commercial air carrier. (Refer to 49 CFR 1548.5(c).)
  3. Protect what the TSA has defined as Sensitive Security Information ("SSI") from disclosure to individuals who do not have a need-to-know of such information in order to perform security-related job responsibilities. (Refer to 49 CFR 1520.)
  4. Ensure that both its employees' and agents' (sub-contracted service providers, also known as authorized representatives, or "ARs") personnel have each passed a TSA Security Threat Assessment ("STA") or have another TSA-approved security credential before being given unescorted access to cargo that such person knows or has reason to believe will subsequently be tendered to a commercial airline. (Refer to 49 CFR 1548.15.)
  5. Ensure that its employees and agents (AR personnel) have been trained in their particular security responsibilities so they will be able to properly perform such responsibilities. (Refer to 49 CFR 1548.11.) This training must be repeated annually. The TSA has clarified that a person, such as a truck driver, who performs services for multiple IACs need receive this training only once per year from one IAC.

Trucker Air Cargo Security Responsibilities—STA and Training

As a trucker, why do I have to comply with TSA security requirements?
The directly-regulated parties under TSA air cargo security regulations are air carriers (airlines), forwarders (indirect air carriers) and airport operators. As a trucker, you fall under TSA security regulations when you are hired by one of these regulated parties (as a sub-contractor) to transport or otherwise handle air cargo. In particular, when a forwarder hires you, the requirement for a Security Threat Assessment ("STA") and training become applicable. Also, the requirement not to disclose Sensitive Security Information (SSI) applies to every person subject to U.S. law, not just to parties the TSA directly regulates. (Refer to 49 CFR 1520.)
How do truck drivers and other trucking company personnel with unescorted access to cargo apply for a Security Threat Assessment ("STA")?
This must be done through an IAC (air forwarder). Each driver must complete and sign a detailed paper applicable form. A trucking company needs to work with an IAC to obtain this form and subsequently submit the information to the TSA for processing. Note: An STA is not required if a person already has a Customs FAST card, airport SIDA badge, TWIC or HAZMAT endorsement to a CDL issued after June 2005.
What does this training for drivers and other sub-contracted personnel consist of and how long does it take?
The subject matter to be trained is specified in 49 CFR 1548.11 and further specified in non-published TSA documents. As is typically the case, the training consists of a presentation of the information to be learned by an instructor or other means, followed by an assessment which a person must pass to complete the training. The required training and assessment for a truck driver will typically require 1-3 hours, depending on the method of delivery and a persons existing understanding of the subject matter. Annual refresher training will typically take less time.
As a trucking company, how can we obtain this training for our drivers and other personnel who have air cargo security responsibilities?
In general, this training must also be obtained or arranged for through an IAC (air forwarder). There are several different methods of training delivery:
  1. An IAC can directly conduct training for its truckers and other agents.
  2. An IAC can provide needed training and assessment materials to a trucking company or other agent, from which training and assessment can be conducted by such company with results reported back to the IAC.
  3. An IAC can authorize a third-party training provider, acting on its behalf as agent (authorized representative for training), to train and assess your company personnel. This is the arrangement under which GISTnet provides IAC air cargo security training to both IACs and trucking company personnel.
How does the training work?
GISTnet training is taken online, on demand, and can be accessed from any web connection. The courses are self paced and can be paused and resumed as necessary. Audio narration is also provided for users who prefer to listen to the material rather than read the lesson text. Throughout the lessons, users are presented with relevant questions to reinforce the learning process. At the end of each lesson the learner must pass an assessment in order to complete the assignment. The learner can take the assessment as many times as necessary to pass at no additional charge. The system keeps a detailed record of the assessment results (date/time stamp and how each question was answered) should the TSA or an IAC ever wish to audit training records.
How does GISTnet go about training trucking company personnel?
An IAC (any IAC) must authorize us to make our security training available to a trucking company or other agent through a simple on-line process. We will then work with a designated person at the company to be trained to assign their personnel to the training. Our system provides progress tracking and reminder notifications to help ensure assigned training is promptly completed, and further provides reminders when annual refresher training is due for each person. Upon completion of the training, a paper certificate may be printed out for presentation to the trained person.
What does GISTnet charge for training trucking company personnel?
Pricing for driver/agent training is currently available on our course catalog, with volume purchase discounts beginning at 10 uses of the training.
If we can get the needed training and assessment materials from an IAC without charge, why should our company pay GISTnet to provide the training?
Training materials alone do not constitute training, and training is never "free." When training is conducted by an instructor, there is the need for a qualified person, time to prepare and conduct the training and assessment, and time to review assessment results with each person trained. By automating the training, all these steps, plus the needed record-keeping, are combined into a process that: Training delivered using GISTnet also saves considerable administration time because it:
Does GISTnet offer this security training in Spanish?
Yes. See our course catalog page for the available Spanish courses.

GISTnet Responsibilities

What are GISTnet's responsibilities?
Our only responsibilities under the CFR and IACSSP are to protect SSI in our custody from unauthorized disclosure and to receive training in our responsibilities. We are also covered by the general USC prohibition on making false statements to federal officials. We are in compliance with all of these requirements.
Does GISTnet staff require STAs?
No. As GISTnet personnel have no unescorted access to air cargo nor to information relating to air cargo shipments, and we do not meet any other criteria for which an STA is required, our personnel do not require nor have STAs.
Is there documentation on STA requirements?
Please refer to 49 CFR 1548.15, as further set forth in IACSSP 1.6.4.

If you have additional questions or would like a demo of GISTnet training, please contact or call +1.310.376.3888 (06:30-18:30 US/Pacific time).