Loss of purchasing power across the global supply chain continues to fuel cargo crime

Bsi Report Crop

 In the recently published Annual Cargo Theft Report 2023 TT Club and BSI SCREEN Intelligence pinpoint high inflation as a primary macroeconomic driver of cargo crime patterns. The rise in food and beverages as a stolen commodity is one such indicator.

Key findings of the 2023 Report:

  • Increase in Food and Beverages (incl. alcohol) stolen from 16% to 24% of global total
  • Most common mode remains Road at 71%
  • Facilities as a location for theft down from 30% to 23%
  • Top countries include Mexico, USA, South Africa, Germany & Italy
  • Electronics slightly down at 9% of incidents but still significant in terms of value
  • Modus operandi differs by region: examples include ‘Blue light crime’ in South Africa & ‘insider activity’ in Asia

As in the past four years BSI and TT have come together to highlight the global cargo crime trends that were prevalent over the previous year. Their Report is intended to serve as cautionary advice to all concerned with supply chain security and also to provide mitigation recommendations to combat these threats which are likely to persist into the current year.

Tony Pelli is Practice Director at BSI, he gives substance to the extent of these crimes, “Cargo theft is a problem that costs companies tens of billions of dollars each year and can cause significant disruption to important supply chains, from pharmaceutical products to semiconductors,” says Pelli. “Having accurate and up-to-date intelligence is the first step in combatting this problem and pinpointing the locations and types of theft that are most likely to harm global supply chains.”

“In identifying shifting crime patterns in terms of new fraudulent methodologies and a focus on both historic and current geographic risk, we seek to assist operators in tightening their security processes,” further explains TT’s Managing Director Loss Prevention, Mike Yarwood. “In addition to the details of the global trends in commodities stolen and the types of theft we have provided a series of case studies drawing attention to prevalent regional or country specific dangers.”

These include an increase in olive oil thefts in Southern European countries following record poor harvests and a consequent rapid rise in the value of the oil, evidenced by the retail cost recorded on supermarket shelves. Also detailed are crimes in both Europe and the USA that employ various types of fraud, including identity theft, fictious pick-ups and drop-offs and credit fraud.  In South Africa so-called Blue Light gangs, who imitate police in order to stop vehicles are becoming more common. Finally, awareness of corruption among employees and third-party contractors is particularly stressed in Asia, where much evidence exists of ‘insider’ activity leading to cargo theft from warehouse facilities and trucking operations.

In terms of mitigation Yarwood comments, “Our combined experience as insurance provider and supply chain intelligence gatherer is invaluable, not just recording the details of crime but also in recommending practical actions and process design suggestions that will strengthen supply chain organisations in their fight against the threat of theft. These too are itemised in our Report.”

The 2023 Cargo Theft Report is available for download below.



About TT Club

TT Club is the established market-leading independent provider of mutual insurance and related risk management services to the international transport and logistics industry. TT Club’s primary objective is to help make the industry safer and more secure. Founded in 1968, the Club has more than 1100 Members, spanning container owners and operators, ports and terminals, and logistics companies, working across maritime, road, rail, and air. TT Club is renowned for its high-quality service, in-depth industry knowledge and enduring Member loyalty. It retains more than 93% of its Members with a third of its entire membership having chosen to insure with the Club for 20 years or more.  


Media contact:

Peter Owen
Portcare International
Tel: +44 (0)1737 248300
E-mail: info@portcare.com

About BSI

BSI is the business improvement and standards company that enables organizations to turn standards of best practice into habits of excellence, ‘inspiring trust for a more resilient world’. For over a century BSI has driven best practice in organizations around the world. Working with over 77,500 clients across 195 countries, it is a truly global business with skills and experience across all sectors including automotive, aerospace, built environment, food and retail and healthcare. Through its expertise in Standards and Knowledge, Assurance Services, Regulatory Services and Consulting Services, BSI helps clients to improve their performance, grow sustainably, manage risk and ultimately become more resilient.

To learn more, please visit: www.bsigroup.com

About BSI Supply Chain Services and Solutions
BSI Supply Chain Services and Solutions is the leading global provider of supply chain intelligence, global supply chain verification auditing services, audit compliance and risk management software solutions, and advisory services. BSI’s supply chain services and solutions and services can work independently to address specific needs or combined together to gain unparalleled visibility into your global operations. Implementing BSI’s holistic supply chain risk management suite provides organizations with a complete solution for a more sustainable and secure supply chain.

To learn more, please visit www.bsigroup.com/supplychain

Media enquiries:

Lucy Stidston, BSI
Tel: +44 20 8996 6330
Email: pressoffice@bsigroup.com

  • TT Club Report - Supply Chain Report April 2024 3 MB


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