Battling Cargo Theft in Brazil

By Edson Perin

With the Brazil-ID system in operation, the Wernher von Braun Research Center expects the creation of several services based on the same infrastructure used for toll collection.

On Apr. 18, 2018, the Wernher von Braun Advanced Research Center launched the Merchandise Identification, Tracking and Authentication System, or Brazil-ID. The Brazilian federal government structured the system through the Ministry of Science, Technology, Innovation and Communications (MCTIC), the Finance Departments of all the States of the Union, and national research centers.

In addition to automating tax and customs procedures, Brazil-ID enables companies to prevent the theft of goods—a problem that has been among the main cost drivers associated with the Brazilian industrial sector. According to a study presented during the event, cargo theft is responsible for a loss of US$1.4 billion in Brazil annually.

Brazil-ID uses middleware capable of integrating and interoperating national identification systems based on radio frequency identification with a means of payment mechanisms, such as tolls regulated by ARTESP and ANTT, and potentially the operation of new plates that can be used in vehicles from all countries of the Mercosur trade bloc. According to Dario Thober, the Wernher von Braun Advanced Research Center's founder and president, several other services can be created to use the existing toll-collection infrastructure.

Watch the interview with Dario Thober (note: this video is in Portuguese).

Participating in the event were risk-management and transportation companies throughout the country, as well as suppliers of solutions, systems and services associated with Brazil-ID. The system is available to companies and institutions starting this month, for the implementation of paperless processes utilizing the Internet of Things (IoT) concept that reduce the risk to logistics and retail operations.

In addition to the immediate employment of solutions for vehicles and cargo containers, which are already valid with the National Electronic Invoice System (NFe), functionalities have been demonstrated for the implementation of the same technology in packaging and products directly. This has led to the automation of IoT and cloud services in general, which will also be linked to the NFe.