What is a Safety and Security Declaration?

A Safety and Security Declaration (SSD) is used by border authorities to analyse the potential risk caused to their territory by goods crossing their border. It is not about the duties and taxes. There are two types of declaration – ENS (entry summary declaration) and EXS (exit summary declaration).

Safety and Security Declarations on imports into GB from the EU (S&S GB) are required at the end of October 2024.

Who is Responsible?

This bit is important so read carefully!

According to the Union Customs Code, the ‘Carrier’ is responsible for submitting the Safety and Security Declaration. In RoRo (ferry) shipping for driver accompanied vehicles, this is the haulier. For unaccompanied trailers this is the ferry operator, BUT many ferry operators have passed this task back to their haulier customers. This means that hauliers need to submit SSDs into the EU or Northern Ireland Import Control System (ICS) from the 1st January 2021.

Each EU member state and Northern Ireland all have their own slightly different ICS system.

Depending on where you are shipping, there are different ways to submit declarations into ICS -

Northern Ireland

Use CustomsLink OR submit direct to Northern Ireland ICS

Republic of Ireland

Use CustomsLink OR submit direct to Irish ICS

North Sea ferry routes

Submit ENS data to ferry company via your ferry booking - CustomsLink can do this on Stena Line and P&O Ferries European routes

Dover Straits (including Eurotunnel Freight)

  • Accompanied:  Use CustomsLink OR submit direct to French ICS
  • Unaccompanied: submit ENS data to ferry company via your ferry booking

Western Channel to Spain

  • Accompanied: Use CustomsLink OR submit direct to Spanish ICS
  • Unaccompanied: submit ENS data to ferry company via your ferry booking

What Data Do I Need to Submit to the ICS?


  • Valid EORI number
  • Name and address
  • Reference number


  • Haulier (for driver accompanied vehicles)
  • Ferry Operator (for unaccompanied trailers)


  • Total number of packages and weight
  • Type of packages
  • Any marks and reference numbers

Route Information

  • Border entry point (name of port)
  • ETA time and date

Vehicle Details

  • Vehicle Identification Number (VIN)
  • Trailer seal (if applicable)

Import Information

  • Importer EORI number
  • Description of goods
  • Tariff numbers

I’m a Haulier - What Do I Need to do Right Now?

SSD BuilderFirstly, speak to your customers to find out how they will get this data to you.

If you are sailing to Belgium, Holland or Spain - unaccompanied, you need to speak to your ferry operator about how you can submit this data to them.

If you are sailing to Spain - accompanied, the ENS needs submitting direct to the Spanish ICS.

If you are shipping into Ireland, Northern Ireland or France, either you need to be able to submit directly into the EU/NI ICS (this process is highly complex and difficult to set up), or find a customs agent who can do this for you.

Take a look at our GB-EU Basic, Transit & Haulier Customs Process guide to see how it applies to the whole customs process.

CustomsLink Can Help

Thankfully, when you use CustomsLink for your customs clearance, we can submit this for you without having to duplicate the data entry.

Even if you haven’t done your customs clearance with us, we can still help you submit this on its own. We can even submit this directly into your ferry booking for some ferry operators! Register online below, or call our expert team on +44 (0) 1772 368 289, available 06.00 - 22.00, 7 days a week.

It's worth noting that not all customs brokers are connected to the Import Control System. CustomsLink are!

"Such a fast and professional service. The procedure we faced for the first time was too complicated and difficult for us. We received all the necessary advices and services from Alex. I have no words for the customs-link service. They are the future of UK customs procedures. Thank you once again, you are our further support."

Sabrina T

Contact our team to discuss your requirements