Supply chain congestion increases the threat of cargo theft


Widespread congestion at ports and inland facilities led to increased opportunities for thieves during the period, according to a new report.

BSI and TT Club have released their latest annual report on the risks of cargo theft present across the world – based on recent incident data for the whole of 2021 collated from sources such as order, governments and professional associations.

The main findings of the study showed that incidents at storage facilities have reached nearly 30% globally, with soaring idle times increasing targeted cargo at rest, with the emerging risks of theft of insiders.

The report shows that the products most frequently implicated in global cargo flights in 2021 included agricultural products (12%), food and beverages (14%), building materials (9%) and electronics ( 10%).

Many materials used to produce building materials and electronics have seen steep price increases since the outbreak of the global pandemic, with a consequent increase in the value of manufactured goods.

© BSI – TT Club – TAPA EMEA

Examining the global situation, the report found that the prevalence of port congestion and delays at gateways in North America has been a crucial factor in the increase in cargo flights.

Periods of inactivity at European sites have also increased the risk of stowaways, while strict COVID-19 protocols at Asian ports, particularly in China, have created delays and backlogs leading to more flight opportunities. .

While the development of new technologies offers new possibilities, BSI and TT Club highlighted the disadvantages this has had on cargo theft: “Criminals have adopted new tactics to target the changing environment of cargo transportation.

“Increasing dependence on technology and a rapidly changing market for the supply of materials and components have increased reliability and efficiency, but also opened up new opportunities for criminals to take advantage of increased vulnerabilities in companies.”

Tony Pelli, Director of Security and Resilience Practices at BSI, produced a checklist of precautionary action points: trucking and other subcontractors; insisting on providing details such as driver name, trailer number and designated pick up times and employee background checks.

The report was also compiled with input from the Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) Region of the Transported Asset Protection Association (TAPA).

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