The emerging economies of India, Brazil, Indonesia, and Malaysia all have a Severe or High risk of cargo theft. The poor economic outlook in Europe has also spawned a significant increase in cargo loss in southern Europe with the most marked rise in cargo theft in Italy and Spain. Cargo theft has created a dangerous environment for drivers as criminals are employing increasingly violent means to seize expensive products. Organized crime is also becoming more involved in cargo theft and cargo tampering in several countries.
The hardest hit sectors include electronics, pharmaceutical, retail, apparel, and alcohol and tobacco. Criminals also commonly target the food and beverage industry, as well as importers and carriers of everyday consumer goods. The repercussions of cargo theft can be devastating. Loss of sales, product theft, liability, product contamination and recall, as well as brand equity damage may result from a single incident of cargo tampering or loss. To mitigate such risks, companies need to develop a holistic risk management program, which differentiates threat levels by country.