Criminals and organised crime syndicates used to primarily target banks, cash in transit vehicles, ATMs and retail stores to get cash by means of armed robberies. Whilst this is not a new trend, 2015 saw a significant increase in the bombing of cash deposit machines, in particular light-weight deposit machines. While official statistics are not available, it is generally believed that attacks in 2016 will be far greater than that of the last two years.
 
According to Richard Phillips, joint CEO of Cash Connect Management Solutions, “Light-weight deposit machines containing large amounts of cash are the new focus. The use of plastic explosives to gain access to the contents of devices has become a popular tactic of the criminals.”
 
At a retail industry event, the Consumer Goods Council of SA stressed the importance of protecting the retail environment, since this accounts for nearly 15% of our GDP. To substantiate the retail sector’s contribution to our economy, Statistics South Africa (SSA) reported that in December 2014 this amounted to an estimate of R707 Billion.
 
Currently, there are 52 armed robbery attacks and 204 burglaries including device bombings on South African businesses every day.
 
According to a recent report for the period of 21 months ending January 2016, 36% of total acts of crime against a measured retail sample were armed robberies, 11% were cash device bombings and 53% of these retailers experienced burglaries.
 
According to Steven Heilbron, also joint CEO of Cash Connect Management Solutions, “Cash Connect’s belief and goal is to enable businesses to operate more efficiently and securely. Indicatively, during this same period, only one armed robbery, 2.8% cash device bombings and 1.7% burglary attacks, of which 80% were defended, were recorded against our clients.”
 
“Our cash vault technology has been vigorously tested on numerous occasions over the past few years by determined and organised criminals using every kind of tool from explosives to sledge hammers. It has undeniably delivered on the level of deterrence and defence, necessary to discourage a repetitive continuance of the scourge of violent crime,” says Phillips.
 
“Light-weight deposit devices cannot reasonably be expected to deter robbers in their pursuit of easy money. The fact is that these devices are often readily and very quickly penetrated or even simply uplifted and stolen,” adds Phillips.
 
It is also important to know that more than 90% of these robberies happen with the help of insider participation.  With this insider help robbers are able to plan and assess the extent of the ‘reward’ and the resistance they will encounter to get it.  The softer the target, the more vulnerable it will always be.
 
The South African market has been flooded with organisations who simply sell deposit machines. There are also a wide variety of service providers who offer cash management solutions including the supply of deposit machines as part of a broader, generalised range of services.
 
When looking for the right service provider for your business, be sure to choose a provider that can reliably and effectively mitigate the risk in your business.
 
To view the video of Richard Phillips discussing Automated Cash Management Solutions, click here.

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