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Security Industry

In the light of the on-going state of the economy, the security industry, as well as business as a whole, has to face up to the ever increasing threat of metal theft. As the world we live in becomes ever more dependent on ever dwindling resources of metals, both precious and otherwise, the seemingly ever increasing value is providing an irresistible temptation to thieves.


The range of theft ranges from the somewhat traditional stealing of lead from church roofs, to highly organised gang theft of wires, pipes and cables.


Hardly a day seems to go by without a village having its phones and broadband cut off, or trains being delayed or cancelled due to the theft of underground wires and cables. Itís therefore little wonder that construction sites need beefed up security like never before. The vast range of raw materials that can be found on a site are an obvious target for metal thieves.


As metal theft in the UK currently stands at an estimated value of approximately £770 million per year, other countries seem to be doing more to combat the problem.


In the United States, new state laws are being drafted to combat the increasing problem. Out of town buyers and secondary metal recycling companies are being required to have special permits, while drivers and sellers of metal are being required to provide photo identification. On top of that, sellers are being made to sign a sworn affidavit that the metal they are selling isnít stolen and their photo id and details are being kept on file for a minimum of two years.


While countries such as the US look at innovative ways to combat metal theft, the UK government is still considering its options. In the meantime, companies are being urged to be more proactive themselves when it comes to preventing these thefts in the first place.


The obvious place to start is by employing some form of security where there is an obvious threat such as construction sites and unoccupied buildings. The time is past where places could be secured with plywood boarding. Although more expensive in the short term, proprietary metal screens can provide a much more viable deterrent in the long run.


Although it is impossible, as well as impractical, to have security coverage of every vulnerable installation, more needs to be done to prevent both the theft of the metal as well as the huge disruption the crime can lead to. As with many things in life, this unwelcome and unpleasant trend is actually providing an opportunity for business. Itís up to the security industry to help out by coming up with cost effective solutions to help businesses combat this ever growing problem.