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BSIA calls for government support on CVIT crime

The British Security Industry Association (BSIA) has announced that it plans to continue its work to reduce the risk faced by couriers as they fulfil cash and valuables in transit (CVIT) services

Despite the fact that attack levels fell to an all-time low in 2013, interim reports for 2014 are appearing to indicate that CVIT crime figures are in danger of rising in the months ahead. 

It was noted that falling victim to attack and robbery remains a very real threat for the security industry's cash-in-transit couriers - and the BSIA called on the government to commit to supporting the efforts of the wider industry to tackle CVIT crime in all its forms. 

An estimated £500 billion is transported by CVIT services every single year, which is equivalent to around £1.4 billion per day. The BSIA emphasised that in its view, CVIT amounts to the performance of an essential public service, as it keeps cash moving around the country, which is vital to the running of banks, retailers and businesses of all sizes. 

This is because millions of transactions carried out every day are only made possible by CVIT - but the nature of the work, carrying large quantities of money around - makes couriers highly vulnerable to attack. 

Research jointly commissioned by the BSIA and the Home Office has been carried out to assess the nature of CVIT offences. It was established that offenders still consider cash-in-transit robbery to be a business crime with no real impact on individuals, despite the ongoing risk of serious injury to couriers. 

Interviews were carried out with convicted offenders as part of the research, with the report stating: "Offenders (especially those who are younger and newer to the crime) perceive CVIT robbery to be a victimless crime and they use this to justify their actions."

Overall injury rates have been in decline since 2012, but despite this positive trend the BSIA underlined the fact that almost a quarter of attacks in 2013 - 24 per cent - resulted in a courier suffering some form of injury. 

This runs counter to the general decline in CVIT crime, with just 270 attacks taking place in 2013. This is 30 per cent fewer than the equivalent figure recorded in 2012 and 75 per cent lower than the all-time high of 1,060 attacks carried out in 2009.

However, couriers remain highly vulnerable - and this is particularly the case when they have to carry cash across the pavement from the secure vehicle to their client's premises. Indeed, the proportion of attacks where firearms were either discharged or used to intimidate rose from ten per cent in 2012 to 14 per cent in 2013.

Head of SaferCash Steve Hurst said: "For couriers going about their daily duties, these attack figures can never be far from their minds and it is for this reason that we as an industry, along with our colleagues in government and police forces across the country, cannot afford to rest on our laurels."


Posted by Andrew Miller

Image courtesy of Thinkstock/iStock

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