Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has led to a number of sanctions against the country, which is widely acknowledged to be unprecedented. Given many ways to circumvent sanctions, continued tracking of Russia’s international trade in order to accurately enforce sanctions requires the use of advanced and efficient tools that can properly control and oversee ways to evade surveillance and bypass sanctions. Artificial intelligence (AI) is a game-changing tool that can play a significant role in making the monitor and control of Russia’s international trade easier. Windward is an Israeli marine tracking company that has developed advanced AI technology for marine tracking. In relation with Iran’s sanctions, the data analysis of this technology based on AI would be of great help in tracking ships, businesses and people related to Iran in imposing comprehensive sanctions against it. We’ve noted that in an agreement with the US department of the treasury, Windward has agreed to track all Russian ships in all Russia’s ports for sanctions. In this regard, we had a discussion with “Amy Daniel”, the founder and CEO of Windward in their central office in Hashlosha, Tel Aviv.
Explain the role of “Windward” in the Russian war against Ukraine.
On Tuesday, March 8, I had a meeting at the US Secretary of the Treasury Office, Janet Yellen in Washington to sign a contract to oversee all Russian naval activities in all Russian ports, and I pledged to provide a full daily report on maritime tracking of Russian ports to the US Treasury. Russia’s crimes in Ukraine have made us duly responsible, and we have pledged to disrupt Russia’s maritime economy by 95% with the help of US Treasury. for example, on March 22, we reported that oil and commercial tankers could easily reach Russian ports. A week-long monitoring report found that these ports’ activities were increased by 44%. So as to put an end to this, the British Department of Defense and the US Treasury Department were provided with this information in full details. We are committed to Washington and London to always be one step ahead of the Russian oligarchy which is recently added to the US Treasury Department’s sanctions list.
How does Winward use artificial intelligence to track ships at sea to expose their illegal activities?
When ships anchor in a Russian port, the ship owner, its crew and what’s it carrying is all in record and known. Embark subscription is done in online systems, banks have a direct role in money transferring and maritime trade, Ship fuel supply companies and others are all part of a complex maritime trade network, and we track and monitor this network from source to target any ship from Iran or Russia or any other target. The lines of work of our company and other companies similar to us, like “Quantexa” and “Skytek” all comes down to data analysis base on AI to monitor ports and maritime activities of countries that are sanctioned by the United States and Europe. This method is also very effective in detecting financial fraud and money laundering. We constantly use satellites and other surveillance equipment to monitor the ships, and upon detecting any suspicious activity such as scape tactics at sea, we act quickly and gather accurate information. Windward has proven to be up to 90% successful and efficient in tracking the ships, which means that the target country’s trade is up to 90% monitored and sanctioned. Windward’s maritime tracking of Iran reduced their oil sales by 70%.
Explain the role of “Windward” in Western sanctions against Russia?
European companies are highly risk averse, and are extremely precautious and conservative for fear of sanctions against Russia. They refrain from doing anything with anyone who has any connection to Russia. Many European companies are now asking our help to ensuring that shipments do not belong to Russia. We have a German customer which is super risk averse and doesn’t want to do any business with anybody who’s ever been near one of these places in the last 24 months.
How does Windward software work?
We receive imagery data from hundreds of satellites that measure a specific offshore area via an API every day. Windward lists all ships that have in some ways visited countries such as Russia, Venezuela, Iran or Myanmar over a period of time using “satellite imagery”, “radio frequency”, “weather data”, “ship ownership and cargo data”, “port data”, “ship departure plans”, etc. in the form of an accurate graph and model, then it determines and rates the risk level of each ship or cargo in accordance with sanctions or other laws.