Permission to board?

Superyacht security tips to keep unwelcome visitors at bay.

Many believe that piracy is the security issue most likely to affect superyachts. Others will tell owners that the physical securing of the yacht and the treasures it may carry is the real worry. Yacht managers explain quietly that the biggest threat to a superyacht is the crew itself, while for many celebrities on board a charter yacht, the paparazzi pose the greatest risk.

Tough questions 

When it comes to piracy, most superyacht owners are only too aware of the physical threats to their yachts. Little is left to chance when it comes to protecting their vulnerable yachts against piracy. Many owners have armed their vessels with the most sophisticated, military standard security including escape pods, former SAS security guards, blinding lasers, long-range acoustic devices, citadels and even submarines. Feeling safe and protected at sea has never been more important.

Photonic Rifle

But how does piracy affect the superyacht industry? Is it possible for an owner to have a maritime security detail on board without it being intrusive, or affecting his or her family’s enjoyment on board? Is it reasonable for a crew to be sailing in these areas in the first place without adequate protection?

In the media

Hardly a week goes by without another report of an attack by pirates or news of a vessel captured. The use of reputable maritime security specialists has many benefits. They can provide security advice; intelligence; crew training; vessel hardening; a physical presence on board; and the option of the use of arms should this become absolutely necessary. Most of the time weapons are never used, and the real value of a maritime security team lies in giving the superyacht owners and crew the confidence and support they need.

Security organisations

The security specialists themselves benefit from being part of a team or organisation. The Security Association for the Maritime Industry (SAMI) was launched in 2009. It is designed to support the maritime industry, including the superyacht communities, by providing a range of solutions for specific security risks, either by using the manpower of service providers or technology and hardware.

The Maritime Asset Security and Training group (MAST) are members of SAMI and are maritime security and piracy protection specialists. They believe that superyacht owners are turning to close protection amid fears of an escalation in maritime crime due to the growing instability in North Africa. MAST provides a range of technological and physical protection services to owners of superyachts around the world and has seen a marked increase in calls from owners, captains and managers about the security of yachts sailing near the African continent.

David Gates, head of sales at MAST, said, “We’re receiving more requests for security consultations and VIP close protection support from superyacht owners. The Suez Canal is a key route in the seasonal movement of superyachts from the Mediterranean and, as a result.

Owners are relying on measures such as armed transit teams to ensure the safe passage of their vessels.

Trust is at the heart of Orcas Security Associates, whether chaperoning children to school or living and working alongside you and your crew on board your yacht, they offer a fully licensed and highly qualified team of security specialists who can keep everyone at bay and deter those that come too close. They also provide you, your loved ones and your crew with the skills to help protect yourselves, through tailored security awareness training that will enable you to recognise possible risks, be alert to the threats around you and deal with them effectively and confidently.