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How Data is Used to Protect the Livelihoods of Americans

Updated: Mar 3, 2021

With the advancement of technology, the E-commerce industry has become a very important aspect of the lives of the American people. "Ordering online is so easy it can become dangerous for America’s agricultural and natural resources. Consumers and companies can order agricultural products with a few mouse clicks, not knowing the seller is overseas." These sellers could then ship agricultural products such as illegal seeds, plants, meats, etc.; introducing an invasive species into our country. Such pests could be detrimental to our crops, livestock, poultry, and even our nation's wildlife; resulting in damages to the livelihoods of the American people.

However, there is a unit of the USDA-Plant Protection and Quarantine (PPQ) called the: Smuggling Interdiction and Trade Compliance (SITC), that works with the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) to prevent this from happening. To do this, they have been using dogs to sniff out these illegal shipments when they arrive in the United States. Now, PPQ is developing another method to stop these shipments from reaching the public using data analytics and visualization.

This is called the PPQ Mail Interception Dashboard. This allows PPQ to filter data to show where CBP and SITC have intercepted these illegal shipments in the past and plot the locations across the United States. PPQ would be able to see where these "violations are located; what products are being imported, from where, and how often; and the pathways that illegal packages travel to the United States." After this PPQ could then visit these locations, seize any "illegal products they find and educate retailers about U.S. import requirements." With this data, PPQ would be able to anticipate the location of these illegal shipments and be ready for it when it happens again.

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714-738-1196 or email us at



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