Cash In Transit (CIT) heists are on the increase and are fast becoming one of the biggest dangers to the South African public. Figures from the South African Banking Risk Information Council (SABRIC) show that there were 378 CIT robberies in 2017. That is, on average, over one CIT incident per day, reflecting a 41% increase of these incidents year-on-year.
Namola, supported by Dialdirect Insurance, a free mobile safety app that allows South African citizens to Get Help Fast in emergency situations, urges CIT businesses to engage with their employees and warn them how the CIT criminals operate.
“Cash is king for criminals,” says Warwick Scott-Rodger, Executive Head of Dialdirect. “Organised crime syndicates access critical information by either bribing or intimidating employees by threatening their security as well as that of their families.”
With this in mind, CIT businesses should:
Screen employees. It is imperative that businesses rigorously screen employees in critical positions and regularly monitor them to minimise exposure to threats from criminals.
Report threats. Employers should encourage employees to report any threats from criminals.
Provide security. Employers need to create a safe space for employees to report threats, but they should also provide appropriate security to the threatened employee and their family.
Anti-Crime Activist and Namola’s Chief Ambassador, Yusuf Abramjee says that CIT heists have not only increased dramatically, but recent video footage also shows that criminals are getting more violent.
“When we report that a particular crime has more than quadrupled since the same period in the previous year, it’s time to sit up and take notice. It means criminals have figured out how to beat the system and they know this is a low risk, high reward crime. In the majority of incidents, commercial explosives are used and the robbers are heavily armed with AK47s, R4 and R5 rifles and open fire easily. Gangs of up to 20 members attack in broad daylight, using stolen or hijacked vehicles, and they strike with military precision,” says Abramjee.
Eyewitness accounts can assist law enforcement, however the public is warned not to put themselves at risk. Namola and Dialdirect offer the following tips to bystanders who witness a CIT:
Be Safe. Get to a place of safety as quickly as possible. Never put your own safety at risk.
Report the incident. The public has been urged to download the Namola app and press the emergency ‘Request Assistance’ button when witnessing a CIT robbery or other crime to #GetHelpFast. An appeal has also been made to the public to come forward with information. Tip-offs can be made anonymously to Crime Stop by calling 08600 10111.
Be observant: What are the perpetrators wearing? What colour and make is the car? Can you see the licence plate number (or a portion of it)?
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