The Urethane Blog

Cargo Theft Overview

2021 Cargo Theft Report Indicates Strong Need for Cargo Security

TT Club, in a conjoined effort with BSI, released their 2021 Cargo Theft Report, indicating 2020’s yearly recap of cargo theft trends and statistics across the globe.  Here’s an overview of its findings:

*71% of cargo thefts occurred during transit, a 16% decrease from the year before but beyond doubt, still the number on type of cargo theft.  In North America (the US, Canada and Mexico), in-transit thefts hit 74%.

*Storage facilities made up 25% of thefts, an increase YOY, partially due to overflow effects from the COVID crisis and a decrease in security efforts.

*Food and beverages remained the number one type of stolen product, accounting for 31% of all thefts.

*New high-value targets took a spotlight due to the coronavirus outbreak including hand sanitizer, PPE, and face masks. (1)

CargoNet’s 2020 recap throughout the US and Canada noted a 16% increase in cargo thefts over 2019 with a 19% uptick in the average theft value, $166,334. (2)

2021 is expected to be just as difficult as we continue battling and recovering from COVID-19.  As BIS and TT Club’s report note, “In the coming year, disruption and the uneven resumption of international trade resulting from the spread of COVID will continue with imbalances in shipping container distribution that are likely to impact maritime, and through a knock-on effect air cargo capacity throughout 2021.  The added vulnerability of cargo will therefore continue.” (3)

Fortunately, as the report notes, no thefts of the COVID-19 vaccine have been reported yet; however, one can only imagine what would happen if the vaccines were stolen and tampered with, counterfeited, sold on the black market, and injected into the arms of millions…another important reason to increase cargo security measures and properly vet out carriers.