The risks of carrying high value cargo by road
The continued rise in e-commerce volumes is driving up the transportation of high value items. The flip side, however, is that various emerging risks should be addressed. Whether over modern motorways or across less well-maintained roads, transportation of high-value goods requires much higher attention to detail and increased safety and security measures from both the shipper and the transport service provider. According to the Transport Asset Protection Association (TAPA), there were more than €172 million of products stolen during the road transport process across Europe, the Middle East, and Africa (EMEA) in 2020. That means that on average, more than €471,000 worth of goods disappear when they are transported between loading and unloading sites. Surprisingly, according to TAPA, “74.6% of all incidents recorded by TAPA EMEA involved cargo thefts in the United Kingdom and Germany.” While the UK and Germany may be considered hot spots for incidents, in this blog we want to shine a spotlight on two security incidents occurring in Switzerland.
An opportunistic break in Basel
One incident happened in Basel, in northwest Switzerland, close to the borders with Germany and France. The incident which took place a few months ago involved someone breaking into the containers and stealing high value consumer goods worth several million dollars. Since the container was fitted with Contguard’s smart IoT sensor– the act of opening the doors of the container, as well as data received from different sources triggered an alert that was immediately handled by Contguard’s leading 24\7 control center team. The team contacted the customer’s escalation center, who contacted the Swiss intervention center informing the police of the incident, resulting in the thief being caught red handed.
Legitimate roadside breakdown or a slick inside job?
Another incident occurred one month ago. A truck laden with high value consumer goods suddenly stopped at the side of the road close to the border of Belgium and the Netherlands. Contguard’s sophisticated AI system detected that the lorry had deviated from its regular course and shortly stopped in an unauthorized zone raising a “suspicious security event” alert. When the police investigated the incident, the driver claimed the lorry had stopped at the side of the road because it had broken down. However, this turned out to be a cover up, as another truck had come along and taken the trailer with the high value goods. This was a classic case of a coordinated inside job. The direct losses of the theft were estimated as high as $4-5m and the indirect losses were even greater when the products flooded the black market. Both the Belgian and the Netherlands police were involved and thanks to Contguard’s smart IoT, AI based solution and 24\7 control center, the goods were recovered, protecting the client from significant financial loss.
These two examples highlight the reason why leading insurance companies recommend Contguard’s solution to their clients. According to a senior underwriter from AXA XL, “If there is a solution like Contguard in the market which is working and affordable, we cannot afford not require our client to use it”.
If you are shipping valuable goods by road, can you afford not to get the best protection possible?
Contact us to learn more about how Contguard can help protect your cargo.