How to curb the recent spike in cash-in-transit robberies
New technology such as the AXIS Camera Application Platform allows companies to further develop licence plate recognition, says Country Manager of Axis Communications Roy Alves.
Within South Africa, cash-in-transit (CIT) robbery has hit top gear to become one of the quickest growing forms of aggravated robbery. According to the Banking Risk Information Centre, double the amount of CIT heists have occurred year-on-year between January and May of 2018.
While an overarching strategy is required to put a halt to this crime plague that involves all role-players including SAPS and security firms, technology can also play a role in the prevention and mitigation thereof. For instance, LPR (licence plate recognition) is used in combating various crimes, as it enables law enforcement and security agencies to read licence plates and see whether a vehicle has been stolen or blacklisted. However, CIT syndicates get around this by stealing cars and replacing the number plates with non-hot plates that will not raise any flags.
New technology such as the AXIS Camera Application Platform allows companies to further develop LPR, says Country Manager of Axis Communications Roy Alves. Where the company would normally read a licence plate via cameras to see if a vehicle has been reported as stolen, the camera is now able to associate the number plate with the type and colour of the vehicle. This means that if it reads a plate that should be on a red VW Golf GTI for example, on a black BMW M2, an alarm will still be raised automatically. This technology is already being piloted in many parts of the world, and would most definitely revolutionise the current way in which LPR is handled, as the cameras now boast the processing and analytics capabilities at the edge.
It is also possible for security companies to install on-board cameras with recorders within CIT vehicles. Live access to these features from within the driver's compartments will allow for earlier warning by notifying the driver of such an imminent threat ahead of time. Furthermore, these cameras are also able to detect changes in sound: for example, if there is a drastic change in audio, the camera would notify the control room of the security firm. This change in audio could be screaming/gunshots or the CIT vehicle skidding on the road. This is achieved by analysing the microphone pickup on the cameras.