The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) says it has extended the deadline seven months, to April 15,2009, as a result of collaboration with port officials and those in the industry. TWIC registration is required for all of those who require unescorted access to secure areas within a port. The program was established under the Maritime Transportation Security Act and SAFE Port Act.
DHS indicates that a large number of ports have already reached program goals and several will be required to be in compliance by the end of this year. Since they are already close to full compliance, owners and operators of facilities at the zones of the Port Zones of Boston, Northern New England and Southeastern New England will have to be in compliance by October 15, 2008.
The TWIC program has a number of mobile sites for registration across the country in addition to 100 fixed enrollment centers. To date, more than 250,000 workers have their TWICs. They may pre-enroll at www.tsa.gov/twic.
The card is tamper resistant, containing biometric data about the holder. It is useless to anyone except the rightful owner. With the card, facilities can verify the identity of each worker, preventing unauthorized individuals from gaining access to secure areas.