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Security Management System (SeMS)

Security Management System (SeMS) is based on the proven principles of Safety Management System (SMS) and enhances airlines security. It strengthens corporate commitment and security culture by way of using systematic, data-driven mechanisms of the security reporting and risk assessment which are based on awareness and training and afterwards embedded into the day-to-day business routine.

Embedding security into the business

IATA has demonstrated the value of the Security Management System (SeMS) through its IOSA Program for more than a decade. SeMS implementation contributed to the capability of airlines to manage security in an ever-changing reality. IATA is well-positioned to share its experience on SeMS with its member airlines and the aviation community. The aim is to support and promote implementation of SeMS principles within the entire aviation industry. To enable this objective, IATA has released the second edition of the SeMS Manual in November 2018.

Through the SeMS Manual , IATA expresses the belief that the SeMS approach is a natural path of evolution in thinking of security and as such should be adopted and integrated by other stakeholders to achieve further improvement of the aviation security generally. IATA, therefore encourages all actors to recognize the value-added of implementing SeMS in a manner tailored to individual needs.

Building a security culture

SeMS reinforces and integrates the security culture. It focuses on the role of human factor. A security culture should be promoted through a 'lead by example' approach and formulated through the company’s Security Policy to get the buy-in of the frontline staff into the importance of security. In this context the information exchange using the security reporting is indispensable. To facilitate collection of data in a structured manner, IATA promotes the security occurrences’ taxonomy (pdf) and the template of the security report form.

SeMS defined

SeMS encompasses the following key elements (IOSA SEC 1.1.1) enabling effective management of security:

  • Senior management and corporate commitment
  • Resources Management
  • Threat assessment and risk management
  • Management of emergencies and incidence
  • Quality control and quality assurance  

Through SeMS, risks can be identified, prioritized and systematically mitigated using well-informed decisions.​​​​​​​​

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