Original content supplied by J.J. Coughlin and SC-ISAC.
Additions made by Electric Guard Dog.
This holiday season, the risk for cargo theft is especially high, warns FreightWatch International, as Christmas and New Year's both occur on a Friday. These back-to-back, three-day weekends leave even more opportunity for thieves to strike as shipments are left unattended for extended periods of time in unsecured lots.
According to FreightWatch, the winter holiday shipping season has historically been one of the most dangerous times for cargo theft, with notable thefts from previous winter holiday weekends including:
2015 – Facility Theft of $300K of Electronics on New Year’s Day in Texas
2014 – Fictitious Pickup of $1M of Apparel in New Jersey
2013 – Full Truckload Theft of $285K of ATVs and Seacraft in Texas
2013 – Facility Theft of $100K of Apparel in Florida
2012 – Last-Mile Courier Theft of $127K of Pharmaceuticals in Oklahoma
2012 – Full Truckload Theft of $1.1M of Electronics in California
To prepare for the upcoming holiday weekends, we are urging the entire SC-ISAC membership to discuss perimeter security and review their security procedures and protocols. Below is a list of suggestions to help maintain the integrity.
- Check security alarm and surveillance systems to ensure proper working order.
- Test security systems — including Electric Guard Dog — to ensure that the entire system is functioning and that monitoring company(ies) are receiving signals.
- If there is a fault in your Electric Guard Dog system, skilled technicians are available 24/7 for troubleshooting on the phone. In many situations, issues can be resolved within a day.
- Ensure batteries are fresh in exit doors and in backup cellular phones (used to maintain alarm reporting, if phone lines are compromised).
- Perform perimeter checks, look at your electric fence, non-electrified fence, and other types of barriers to ensure they are properly secured.
- Check perimeter lighting to ensure lights are on and replace any non-working fixtures. Review timer so that lights come on while facility is closed.
- Use a non-integrated alarm backup system with verified response capabilities.
- Ensure company alarm call list is current and contains valid phone numbers. Require responsible persons to respond to all alarm calls even if the system is suspected of malfunctioning.
- Contact law enforcement and ask for additional patrols in the area.
- Remove keys from all warehouse equipment (forklifts) and place them in a secure location.
For Freight In-Transit:
- If you have to leave your rig or loaded trailer unattended, look for a secure lot or authorized location to leave vehicles.
- If forced to leave vehicles at a public facility (truck stop, etc) pick one that is well lit and utilizes surveillance equipment. Park within view of the camera.
- Secure the tractor and trailer with a steering wheel locking device, kingpin locks, glad-hand locks (or other security equipment). Put industrial strength padlocks on trailer doors.
- Do NOT leave keys inside tractor.
- Check on the unattended vehicles as frequently as possible.
- Use embedded covert tracking in the freight with geo-fencing and alert notification.
- Notify dispatch of where and when you have dropped the load and estimated time of return.
Happy holidays and be safe.