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Cargo crime figures highlight need for specialist insurance cover

The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted significantly on supply chains forcing companies to adapt to new risks and threats created by an increase in cargo crime.

During 2019, the National Vehicle Crime Intelligence Service (NaVCIS) received 4,360 notifications of UK HGV, Freight and Cargo related crimes constituting a combined cost price loss value of £115 million. In the first two months of 2021 there were 443 HGV & Cargo Crime notifications with a value of £9.4m.

As goods travel through global supply chains, they are vulnerable to theft, fraud, diversion, counterfeiting and corruption. With many consumers moving to online shopping due to the pandemic lockdowns, the increase in packages being transported allied to the stock piling of goods has increased the exposure to theft.

Robust risk management coupled with a comprehensive insurance programme, provides the ultimate safety net against the uncertain consequences of many of the emerging exposures,

Reports indicate food and beverage products remain the most frequently stolen commodity, followed by electronics and alcohol and tobacco product with slash and grab thefts from trucks parked in unsecured parking lots a continuing problem.

Theft from warehouses rose significantly last year, accounting for 25% of all theft locations while in Europe, the stockpiling of goods meant 48% of 2020 reported thefts came from warehouses and production facilities.

Powered by the Supply Chain Risk Exposure Evaluation Network (SCREEN) tool, the British Standards Institution (BSI), found that, while COVID-19 concerns remain at the top of the list, its effect has created secondary disruptions and risks which are impacting supply chains and cargo theft.

“Long-held practices around supply chain resilience have been completely upended,” said Jim Yarbrough, global intelligence programme manager at BSI. “As organisations begin the process of rebuilding their supply chains following the COVID-19 pandemic, the BSI’s latest SCREEN data indicates that, in addition to the virus, they face new and additional threats, underscoring the need for business continuity planning.”

In the face of this increasing threat, it is vital to have the correct Cargo insurance in place to mitigate risk from the physical loss of or damage to goods during transit, imports, exports and domestic carriage, including any incidental storage.

W Denis group provides a range of specialist insurance services to shipping companies, ports, freight forwarders, cargo handling terminals and haulage firms. All of these have had to evolve over the years due to an ever-changing regulatory framework and increased competition.

Daniel Moss is the W Denis specialist point of contact. For any enquiries please contact him at and on 0044 (0)113 2439812

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