Vessel Viewer


Your view into vessel history and activity

Vessel insights

Provide information on a vessel’s identity, AIS coverage, apparent fishing events and authorizations.

Powerful search

Equips users with the ability to search for specific vessels, build custom vessel groups, share links to vessel profiles and save them offline as PDF files.

Vessel profiles

Build detailed profiles that show identity information alongside tracks and summaries of events such as apparent fishing, port visits and transshipments, that can be interpreted by timeline, location or relationships between vessels.

Open access

Makes Global Fishing Watch data and analysis accessible to all, empowering users to work more efficiently and effectively.

What is Vessel Viewer?

Vessel Viewer is a vessel history and insights tool developed in partnership with TMT that uses satellite data and advanced analysis to produce current and historical information on vessel identity and activity. Available for use by anyone with an internet connection, Vessel Viewer consolidates data from a range of public sources to provide access to key information in an easy-to-use format. It can be used across public and private sectors to enhance fisheries controls, strengthen risk assessments and bolster the due diligence process – important factors in combating illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing.

Developed through several pilot uses focused on port inspections, fisheries enforcement, insurance and seafood supply chains, it allows users to identify and cross-check information about a given vessel, its fishing operations and relevant compliance history and authorizations to support decision making and operational planning.

Vessel viewer in action


Supporting States in implementing effective port controls


Vessel Viewer was first piloted in November 2021 as part of a partnership between Global Fishing Watch and TMT with four African countries to support implementation of the Advance Request for Port Entry process, a key component of the FAO Agreement on Port State Measures.


Vessel Viewer provides a wide range of information on vessels from multiple sources which ensures access to complete and reliable vessel data to aid in conducting risk assessment in relation to processing advanced requests for port entry as well for vetting foreign fishing vessels for port access and potential registration.


Shadrack Machua
assistant director of Fisheries, Kenya Fisheries Service

Supply chain

Integrating data sources to enhance transparency


The Supply Chain Risk Project kicked off in January 2022 with Global Fishing Watch extending Vessel Viewer access to project partners FishWise, Stanford Center for Ocean Solutions and the World Economic Forum’s Friends of Ocean Action. The project has focused on integrating disparate ocean data sources to develop new automated analytical capabilities and indicators to improve understanding of risks in fisheries supply chains and make the data accessible and actionable by companies.



Having detailed vessel insights allows for deeper supplier engagement and better-informed discussions between seafood companies and their suppliers. Streamlining risk assessments and supplementing existing processes with vessel-level insights, companies can transition from spending the majority of their resources on assessing risk to now directing efforts to address and action those risks via due diligence activities.


Lindsay Ceron

senior project director, FishWise

Vessel insurance

Harnessing data to inform decision making


In September 2022, new features and information sources were integrated into Vessel Viewer, and access was extended to various new partners in collaboration with Ocean Risk and Resilience Action Alliance and TMT. Over the next seven months, Vessel Viewer proved to be a powerful  tool for underwriters at insurance and reinsurance companies, harnessing data to quickly identify risks or information gaps to determine  n whether to insure a vessel and/or request further information on it.



We see different providers of intelligence data related to different segments and shipping operations. Vessel Viewer is tailored for fishing operations using the experience of Global Fishing Watch to identify relevant triggers for suspicious fishing activities.


Marius Schønberg

vice president, loss prevention, Gard AS

Supporting global processes to address illegal fishing through transparency

Greater transparency of human activity at sea will inform dynamic, data-driven decisions and provide a level of accountability that can be properly and efficiently enforced by all–even where resources may be limited. Vessel Viewer is helping generate even more transparency across existing efforts by providing useful insights about vessels and their activities.

Port State Measures Agreement

The Food and Agriculture Organization’s Agreement on Port State Measures (PSMA) is the first and only binding international agreement to specifically target IUU fishing. Under it, more than 70 States and the European Union are required to collect and cross-check information on vessels requesting port entry.

Vessel Viewer can be used as part of a comprehensive regime to enhance fishing vessel monitoring and support States in implementing effective port controls. Decision makers can use it to cross-check information reported by vessel operators and their flag States regarding vessel identity, authorizations, recent port visits and fishing operations — all of which need to be assessed under the PSMA to determine port access and set inspection priorities before catch is permitted to be landed. This information can be used by competent authorities to understand if a vessel has been operating in line with what it is permitted to do, and ensure compliance with relevant conservation and management measures as part of national legislations and commitments.

Global Record of Fishing Vessels

The Global Record of Fishing Vessels, Refrigerated Transport Vessels and Supply Vessels, commonly referred to as the Global Record, was launched in 2018 by the Food and Agriculture Organization and represents the international communities’ flagship transparency initiative. It provides authorities with a single access point for information on vessels used for fishing and fishing-related activities as formally and officially reported by a vessel’s flag State.

The insights provided by Vessel Viewer complement data included in the Global Record, which continues to be developed and populated with vessel identity information. The data and analysis we provide through Vessel Viewer can act as an important tool to cross-check and deepen the knowledge of vessels in the public domain.

By directly matching static vessel record information with dynamic tracking information, authorities can identify discrepancies in what is reported by a flag State compared to what is reported by a vessel operator over time – a useful insight that could trigger more comprehensive action and collaboration across flag, coastal, port and market States.

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