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 Chemical security for industry

If you work with chemicals you have an important role to play in keeping Australia safe.

You are in the best position to report information about chemical diversion and theft, suspicious use of chemicals and large or unusual chemical orders or requests. Remember, trust your instincts. If you see something, report it.

Information provided to the National Security Hotline has contributed to major counter-terrorism investigations in Australia.

Keeping chemicals secure makes good business sense

Terrorists seek to disrupt our way of life. Not only do terrorist attacks cause mass destruction, injuries and fatalities; they can also have the flow-on effect of causing economic damage, through a decline in spending and investment.

To help minimise the risk of commonly available chemicals being used for terrorist purposes, the Australian Government, together with state and territory governments and the chemicals industry, have developed a national code of practice. The code promotes effective chemical security management of 15 high-risk chemicals that can be used to make homemade bombs by providing useful information to help you assess and address your security risks. It includes the steps you can take to ensure that your chemicals are not stolen or diverted for terrorist purposes.

For a copy of the code, visit the National Code of Practice page.

Good security is good for business. By remaining vigilant about chemical security, not only are you protecting your valuable stock and reputation, you are helping to keep Australia safe.

Manufacturers, importers and transporters

Chemical security involves all points in the supply chain. As a business that imports, manufactures, reformulates, repackages, transports or stores chemicals—you play a crucial role in keeping Australia safe.

By assessing your business's risk and implementing security measures to reduce that risk, you can prevent your chemicals from being used by terrorists.

Retailers

If you sell chemical products to the general public you have an important role to play in helping keep Australia safe from terrorism.

Some of the common products you sell may contain chemicals of security concern that can be stolen, diverted or purchased by terrorists to make bombs or toxic weapons.

As a retailer, you are in the best position to identify and report suspicious behaviour involving your chemicals. You can help protect Australia by being aware of, and alert to, suspicious behaviours that take place around the chemicals you sell – including the behaviour of your customers, staff and contractors.

Other sectors

Some of the products you regularly use could contain chemicals of security concern. Chemicals of security concern are chemicals that are at risk of being used by terrorists to make bombs or toxic weapons.

What can I do to keep my chemicals safe?

The National Code of Practice for Chemicals of Security Concern contains practical information to help you assess your chemical security risk and also suggests security measures you can put in place to minimise risk.

The Resources page of this website contains information you can download to raise awareness of chemical security in your workplace.

How do I report suspicious behaviour?

You are in the best position to identify and report suspicious behaviour involving your chemicals. Information provided to the National Security Hotline has contributed to major counter-terrorism investigations in Australia. The information you pass on may be the critical piece needed to complete a bigger picture.

Every piece of information helps, and you can remain anonymous.

How do I know if I am using chemicals of security concern?

A link to the full list of 96 chemicals of security concern can be found on the chemical security page. We encourage you to check the labels on your products to see if they contain any of these chemicals.

If you are in the agricultural or veterinary industry, you can also visit the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority website for more details about the products you use. The website contains a Public Chemical Registration Information System (PUBCRIS) that you can use to check whether the active ingredients in your products are chemicals of security concern.

I am using chemicals of security concern, what should I do?

If you use, sell, transport or store chemicals of security concern, you should be vigilant about protecting the security of your chemicals. For helpful tips on how to assess your security risk and the steps you can take to reduce this risk, visit the National Code of Practice page.

Aside from implementing strong security measures for your business, you should also be mindful of any suspicious behaviour involving your chemicals.

Suspicious or unusual behaviour could include:

  • someone asking questions about your security or taking photos of your premises
  • someone asking unusual questions about the chemicals held on site
  • stolen or missing chemicals, including discrepancies with stock deliveries.

Trust your intuition. If it doesn't feel right, call the National Security Hotline and report your concerns. The information you pass on could be the critical piece needed to complete a bigger picture.

You can also share the chemical security message with people in your workplace. Visit the Chemical security resources webpage for information you can download to raise awareness about chemical security.