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The International Border Management and Technology Association


A former UK Border Force head is behind a new organisation that aims to strengthen border management globally.

The International Border Management and Technologies Association (IBMATA) is the brainchild of Tony Smith, who also led the UK government’s border security programme for London 2012 which saw three million athletes, coaches, spectators and officials processed at the UK border on top of business as usual.

IBMATA, which has its official launch at the Border Management & Technologies Summit Asia conference in Kuala Lumpur, aims to promote best practice in border management principles and the intelligent use of new and emerging technology.

Tony Smith, who chairs IBMATA, believes better collaboration and joint working at both national and international level is the main factor that will determine the successful management of international border controls.

He said:

“Border controls have never been under greater pressure, and things will only get tougher for the agencies managing them.

“More people are crossing international borders than ever before. Air traffic is due to double over the next 20 years, and freight is set to triple over the same period. Terrorism and cyber threats are global and fluid.

"It is time for another radical shift in the way we manage border controls. 

"The introduction of technologies into future borders will be a huge part of this, but regardless of the capabilities the real change will only come through collaboration. 

"That means bringing together the eco-system of border management. Control agencies, airlines, airports, rail and sea carriers, port control authorities, academics, policy makers and technology providers big and small all have a role to play.”

A not-for-profit organisation, IBMATA intends to:


  • Build a platform for communication and collaboration;
  • Develop and manage international events and workshops for members and partners;
  • Build a library of relevant materials on the principles of modern day border management and latest advances in technology; and
  • Work with its members and partners to identify models of best practice.

Membership is open to any department, agency, organisation or company that has a role or interest in border management or the safe and secure movement of goods and people internationally.

Further information is available at www.ibmata.org.


Notes to editors

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About Tony Smith

IBMATA chair Tony Smith CBE is a former head of the UK Border Force. He served as Gold Commander for the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic border security programme.

During his 40-year career, he also served as Regional Director for London and the South East in the UK Border agency, Head of Border Control in the UK Immigration Service, and Head of Ports and Border Management in Citizenship and Immigration Canada. 

He was awarded the CBE in 2013 for services to the safety and security of London 2012. After retiring from public service, he became Managing Director of Fortinus Global Ltd.

The 2nd Border Management and Technologies Summit takes place from 7-9 November in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. More details are at http://www.intelligence-sec.com/events/border-management-technologies-summit-asia-2017

Follow IBMATA on Twitter @border_mgmt