According to new research from theft prevention and recovery company CargoNet, cargo theft is still a major concern to freight operators across the country, with the trucking sector being particularly vulnerable to these crimes around the holidays. In only a two-week period between Dec. 23, 2023, and Jan. 2, 2024 losses from stolen items topped $7.5 million.

Implementing Safety Strategies

According to Scott Cornell of Travelers Inland Marine, fleet operators and truck drivers may protect themselves from cargo theft by implementing the following strategies:

Driver Awareness

First and foremost, it’s crucial to promote driver awareness. Cornell emphasizes the significance of making sure that everyone involved—from truck drivers to fleet executives—is knowledgeable about identifying and thwarting cargo theft. Specifically, drivers are the first line of defense against these kinds of crimes.

It is equally important to implement strong systems and procedures against theft. Having well-defined procedures guarantees prompt and efficient reactions in the case of theft situations. The fleet’s operations should incorporate prevention techniques, while loss mitigation requires readiness.

Using Technology to Your Advantage

An additional line of defense is the use of technology and equipment designed to deter theft. This includes security cameras, back door locks, and hard locking systems, which operate as deterrents and help apprehend offenders while in the act.

All staff members must receive ongoing training in order to keep current with changing trends and techniques used in stealing. Attending conferences on cargo theft, taking part in webinars, and becoming a member of associations, such as the Transported Asset Protection Association, may offer significant perspectives and educational prospects.

CargoNet predicts a change in cargo theft toward more calculated methods in 2024. The use of bogus pickups and identity theft by criminals to take advantage of weaknesses in supply networks is growing. These strategies, which lessen the dangers of actual theft, are anticipated to continue in the upcoming year.

Be Aware of Commonly Stolen Goods

Certain commodities are preferred by cargo thieves over others. Tires, solar panels, sodas, energy drinks, and liquor are among the most often targeted goods. But a wider range of products are also at danger, such as clothes, cosmetics, and footwear. Cornell claims that the selection of targeted goods is influenced by economic concerns, with consumables, like food and drink, being enduring favorites.

In Summary

While Southern California, Texas, and Florida are traditionally hotspots for cargo theft, Cornell notes a worrying pattern of occurrences extending to previously untouched places across the country. Since criminals can now target shipments in less-guarded locations thanks to the rising dependence on virtual operations, law enforcement and industry stakeholders face new difficulties. As Cornell rightly points out, everyone involved in cargo theft must be vigilant and flexible in light of the constantly changing scenario.

Should you have any questions regarding this and how it could impact your shipments, please reach out to our team today.

Additionally, we have our weekly market updates that can provide you with relevant freight news, updates, developments across the industry, and more.


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