The Coast Guard maintains responsibility for the oversight of 361 U.S. ports, requiring optimization of the Ports, Waterways and Coastal Security (PWCS) resources allocated to provide security. Human scheduling of patrols leads to predictable patterns in patrol times, routes and activities, which can be circumvented when observed by an adversary. This greatly increases the likelihood and capability of the adversary to carry out actions within the port. Sectors need an easy to use and academically rigorous model to maximize deterrence using available resources.
The Port Resiliency for Operational and Tactical Enforcement to Combat Terrorism (PROTECT) model is an end-user tool designed to intelligently randomize PWCS activities in a port to improve asset utilization and promote greater deterrence.
PROTECT went through a comprehensive operational testing and evaluation phase in Boston, Massachusetts. Patrol patterns, prevalent in pre-PROTECT PWCS schedules, were eliminated and resources were better utilized through increased patrols to high value port critical infrastructures. USCG Station Boston continues using PROTECT to schedule port of Boston PWCS patrols.
PROTECT is undergoing further expansion and testing at Sector New York and Sector Los Angeles/Long Beach before release Coast Guard wide. The Research and Development Center ‘s Modeling and Simulation Center of Excellence (MSCOE) will have the capability to provide other USCG Sectors with PROTECT schedules and analysis.
PROTECT will provide the Operational Commander a quantifiable decision tool for making better informed risk based decisions, which will improve operational efficiency and maximize deterrent effectiveness.