About TT Club
TT Club is the leading provider of insurance and related risk management services to the international transport and logistics industry. From the world’s largest logistics companies to individual transport operators – we provide quality tailor-made cover for our members.TT Club has unparalleled experience in transport and logistics insurance and at any one time handles over 10,000 open claims files – covering everything from bodily injuries, contractual disputes and mis-declared cargo to forklift truck collisions and sinking ships.
With nearly 50 years of service, TT Club’s wealth of experience brings you:
- Expertise in tailoring the right cover for you
- Experience in helping you to avoid unnecessary risks
- A single source of knowledge, readily available
- Confident judgements on whether a claim is worth pursuing in court or not
- Support from specialist surveyors, lawyers and other experts
An integrated service, unlike general insurers, we are transport specialists. Our network of local partners – spanning 200 countries – share our integrated IT systems. Our extensive geographic reach ensures we can always get the right person on site quickly – a local expert who not only speaks the language and appreciates the culture, but also understands all the applicable laws and regulations.
Cargo theft accounts for a tenth of claims in the last decade
Mike Yarwood, Senior Loss Prevention Executive at TT Club, comments:
“Cargo theft remains one of the most significant causes of disruption in the supply chain and claims cost to the Club, accounting for around 10% by volume and cost of all reported claims in the last ten years. These incidents not only result in direct financial loss, but also have severe impacts on brand reputation and the capability to manage the availability of stock through to retail customers.
“Whilst there are inevitably geographical “hot spots”, this is a global phenomenon and one which has yet to be overcome in any part of the world. It is notable that theft “hot spots” are not restricted to areas suffering economic downturn; affluent regions where high value consumer goods are destined are equally susceptible to theft.
“TT Club data analysis identified there are discernible patterns concerning the days of the week and months of the year in which cargo is stolen. Perhaps unsurprisingly, theft incidents are more frequent between Monday and Friday, with Thursday showing as the most vulnerable day of the week. In terms of average value, Sunday indicates a more targeted approach, while Friday thefts are the most lucrative.
“The number of notified thefts through the first and second quarters appears reasonably stable, with a peak in March, but the incident rate climbs through the third and fourth quarters, peaking in October, the patterns are heavily influenced by peak freight movements associated with annual holidays. Valuation averages similarly reflect the commodities commonly associated with consumer holidays.
“When the data are further interrogated to understand the most theft attractive cargoes, TT Club’s experience is representative of the industry wide results, with Electronics, Food & Drink, and Clothing comprising over 40% of cargo theft incidents.
“Research suggests there are elevated volumes of cargo thefts on key traffic routes from the major import ports and terminals. The road infrastructure that is developed to support this flow of traffic through to main cities and motorway networks often serves as a bottleneck and there is rarely sufficient availability of secure parking to satisfy demand. For criminal organisations this provides an obvious feeding ground. While rail and inland waterway movements are less prone to theft, they are not exempt.
“Regardless of the geographic location or the method of the theft, the subsequent recovery of stolen cargo continues to be challenging, especially in regions where the resources of the relevant authorities are stretched and have priorities which lie outside of the sphere of cargo crime.
“Considering the volume of cargo often stolen, one question which plagues operators and insurers alike is; where does the stolen cargo actually go? There are many stories of the ‘Dark Web’, social media and auction websites through which volumes of cargo are laundered. Frequently, such cargo is understood to be re-exported and shipped to various regional markets in reduced quantities to lower suspicions and avoid detection. Whichever method is selected, it is evident criminal organisations are adept at moving stolen cargo through the supply chain almost as efficiently as professional logisticians are able to move legitimate goods.
“Security devices to combat such thefts are constantly being developed; technology is advancing rapidly and each emerging product serves to close out another loop in the security of the supply chain. Where such devices are a visible deterrent to the would-be thief, their effectiveness is determined only by the resolve of the thief. If the thief is sufficiently motivated, it seems that the cargo will in any event be stolen. The device may dutifully record the exact time, date and location of the crime, but the cargo may nevertheless be stolen and not recovered.
“There are, however, an increasing number of providers developing covert tracking devices which are small enough to fit within the carton or cargo itself. Where undetected by the thief, this technology may in time serve to provide the authorities with invaluable information about temporary storage of stolen cargo and also reveal typical routes to market, which may support more complete and rapid recovery, as well as apprehension of criminals.”
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