USA Banner

Official US Government Icon

Official websites use .gov
A .gov website belongs to an official government organization in the United States.

Secure Site Icon

Secure .gov websites use HTTPS
A lock ( ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .gov website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

U.S. Department of Transportation U.S. Department of Transportation Icon United States Department of Transportation United States Department of Transportation
MSCI Advisory

2020-010-Global-Overview of the U.S. Maritime Advisory System


This revised advisory cancels U.S. Maritime Advisory 2019-015.

1. Issue: This Advisory provides updates to maritime security resources, websites, and information.

2. Guidance: The U.S. Maritime Advisory System website (, which contains all current and expired U.S. Maritime Alerts and Advisories is maintained by the Maritime Administration (MARAD). Upon U.S. Government (USG) clearance of Alerts and Advisories, they are broadcast by the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) and distributed via email. It is important to note that these are USG collaborative products and are not solely MARAD or NGA authored products.

3. Feedback provided by U.S. commercial maritime stakeholders regarding the U.S. Maritime Advisory System has greatly supported the USG in pursuing continued enhancements to this system. Feedback to is always welcome.

4. The primary maritime security reporting and information center for the Gulf of Guinea, Maritime Domain Awareness Trade – Gulf of Guinea (MDAT-GoG), now hosts a web site at which contains all MDAT-GoG reports and other resources. Additionally, the recently issued “Best Management Practices to Deter Piracy and Enhance Maritime Security Off the Coast of West Africa including the Gulf of Guinea” (available under the Geography – Gulf of Guinea pull-down menu at provides additional guidance and resources for operating in this area.

5. The Office of Naval Intelligence (ONI) publishes the Worldwide Threat to Shipping (WTS) and the Weekly Piracy Update (WPU) which provide information on piracy and armed robbery at sea activity levels, trends, and details on recent incidents. The reports can be found on ONI's "Shipping Threat Reports" website at

6. The Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) of the Department of the Treasury administers and enforces economic sanctions based on U.S. foreign policy and national security goals against targeted foreign countries and regimes, terrorists, international narcotics traffickers, those engaged in activities related to the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, and other threats to the national security, foreign policy or economy of the United States. In some cases, these sanctions may impact maritime trade. Numerous updates to the website have occurred since the last publication of this advisory. On May 14, 2020 OFAC, together with the Department of State and the Coast Guard, issued a global advisory to alert the maritime industry, and those active in the energy and metals sectors, to deceptive shipping practices used to evade sanctions, with a focus on Iran, North Korea, and Syria; the advisory can be found at: Additional OFAC sanctions information and notices can be found at: Questions relating to OFAC sanctions may be emailed to: The Department of State has certain authorities to implement a range of nonproliferation, counterterrorism, and Iran-related sanctions, among others, which may impact maritime trade. Information about non-proliferation sanctions can be found at:

7. The U.S. Department of State maintains a list of countries determined by the Secretary of State to have repeatedly provided support for acts of international terrorism. Taken together, the four main categories of sanctions resulting from designation under these authorities include restrictions on U.S. foreign assistance; a ban on defense exports and sales; certain controls over exports of dual use items; and miscellaneous financial and other restrictions. The State Sponsors of Terrorist list is available at:

8. U.S. Centers for Disease Control Travel Notices may impact maritime interests, especially during overseas crew changes or passenger embarkation/disembarkation, and can be found at: Numerous updates to the website have occurred since the last publication of this advisory including info on COVID-19, an Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and several outbreaks of Polio throughout the world. U.S. Maritime Alerts and/or Advisories may occasionally be published to highlight health threats depending on their scope, urgency, and impact, but mariners are advised to become familiar with this web resource and refer to it prior to traveling.

9. U.S. Department of State Travel Advisories discuss safety and security information that should be reviewed by U.S. mariners prior to disembarkation in foreign ports. These travel advisories are available at:

10. The Maritime Global Security website at offers industry issued best practices and guidance to mariners by geographic region and provides contact and subscription information for regional maritime security reporting centers, particularly in high risk-areas.

11. Cancellation of Prior Advisories and Special Warnings: This message cancels legacy Department of State Special Warnings 29 (Cuba), 124 (Nicaragua), and 131 (Libya).

12. Those who desire to subscribe to U.S. Maritime Alerts and Advisories may do so at, which also provides additional information on the U.S. Maritime Advisory System.

13. Contact Information: Questions regarding the U.S. Maritime Advisory System may be emailed to the Global Maritime Operational Threat Response Coordination Center at Additional contact information is available on the U.S. Maritime Advisory System website listed above.

14. This message will automatically expire on December 22, 2020.