Recent images on Facebook, television and in other media of trucks burning on South African highways is an extremely sad statement of the devolution of a country – and reinforcement of a huge need by transporters to have as much intelligence as possible before risking it all on the road.
Transporting goods and supplies from one location to another is a vital, but also very risky business. Trucks and other modes of transportation are particularly vulnerable to the threat of crime and fraudulent action while the goods are on the road and/or in transit.
“It is hard to safeguard the security of these items when you are operating alone. Many businesses seem to suffer great losses during this crucial part of their business system,” says Kyle Condon, Managing Director of D&K Management Consultants.
Condon continues to suggest the best way to ensure the safety of goods in transit is through the employment of undercover agents.
“They know what they are doing, they are highly trained and qualified individuals who can see the threats and report back on problems that are easily missed by the general public. Being undercover also means they become privy to inside information.”
According the South African Police Service and Stats SA, South Africa’s crime statistics for 2018 included: 28 849 reported incidents of stock-theft; 1 202 reported incidents of truck hijacking; 16 325 reported incidents of carjacking; and 50 663 reported incidents of theft of motor vehicles and motorcycles.
In addition to the above statistics, there are also threats of fraudulent behavior within the company’s own workforce. Undercover agents are able to infiltrate the workforce as an ‘employee’ and thereby gain important information regarding the actions and trustworthiness of the current staff complement.
“It is crucial to employ investigation and loss control solutions that are tailored specifically for the transportation industry. These solutions are intricately crafted around the particular details pertaining to transportation companies,” adds Condon.
“They consider the running and functioning of these companies, with tight deadlines and large overhead expenses, as well as the intricate processes involved in effectively transporting and storing a variety of goods for a range of industries. As a result, potential threats and weaknesses in security prevention can adequately be assessed and processes successfully adjusted and strengthened for a safer journey.
“Undercover investigation is not only useful for loss investigation or for theft. These undercover agents should rather be viewed as ‘deployed auditors’. Undercover investigation services offer the opportunity to identify weaknesses in company policies and operating procedures. If these policies are not ‘audited’ using undercover investigation services, then there is a great chance that these companies may not ever know where the real issues lie.”
Understanding where the threats and weaknesses are within transportation procedures, through the employment of undercover investigation services, will reduce threats and improve processes.
“It also aids in discovering who and where the weak links and internal threats to company security are, resulting in a securer and safer ride for company employees, assets and products,” concludes Condon.