Rural and agricultural crime is a growing concern that has been making headlines across the UK and East Anglia.
Despite farmers investing in advanced security measures such as CCTV cameras, high-security fencing, and alarm systems, thieves are finding new ways to access properties and steal valuable equipment like machinery, vehicles, fuel or GPS units. At Regency Guarding & Events Ltd, we understand the unique challenges faced by the farming community and are committed to providing tailored solutions to protect your assets.
The Uptick in Rural and Agricultural Crime
In recent years, rural and agricultural crime has seen a significant increase. Despite a decrease in crime during the pandemic in 2020/21, rural and agricultural theft has since risen in 2022, and continuing to rise based on figures released of the year so far. Often, thieves are not just individuals but a part of, even international, groups that use increasingly sophisticated methods to bypass traditional security measures. Even drones and other technologies are being harnessed to identify targets.
The result is a continued anxiety amongst farmers, already facing significant challenges following the pandemic, cost-of-living crisis and war in Ukraine. It is these events that have opened up new illicit markets that continued to affect the wellbeing of the farming community.
The scale of this increase in rural and agricultural crime can be captured through last year’s statistics, highlighted by NFU mutual:
22% increase in rural crime, costing an estimated £49.5m.
29% cost increase in agricultural vehicle claims following theft, reaching £11.7m.
15% cost increase to GPS theft, reaching £1.8m. Early indications suggest that this cost has since more than doubled already in just the first four months of 2023.
87% cost increase in livestock theft claims, reaching £2.7m.
50% increase in dog attacks on livestock between 2019 and 2022.
Security Methods in Place
Despite the perhaps grim outlook, farmers should still utilise essential security measures, including:
CCTV Cameras: Surveillance cameras are being installed to monitor and record activity on the property. Modern systems can even send alerts to smartphones if suspicious activity is detected.
Fencing and Barriers: High-security fencing and barriers are used to restrict access to the property, making it more difficult for thieves to enter.
Alarm Systems: Alarms can be triggered by motion sensors or door contacts, alerting property owners or security services to a potential breach.
Security Lighting: Adequate lighting can deter criminals by making them more visible and vulnerable to detection.
How Regency Guarding & Events Ltd Can Assist
Well aware of the concerning situation for farmers, our services are well-suited for rural and agricultural environments. Particularly, our mobile patrol groups are a cost-effective, tailor made solution to keep farming premises safe. Our patrol cars ensure perimeter security of especially large sites like farmland, whilst our cloud-based checkpoint reporting system ensures timely decision-making and highlighting any issues or concerns identified during patrols. Mobile security is proven to reduce property crime rates by 97%, so don’t let hesitancy cost you in repair damage and replacement costs.
Rural and agricultural crime is a complex issue that requires a comprehensive and adaptive approach. By understanding the current landscape and investing in a combination of traditional and innovative security measures, farmers can protect their livelihoods and contribute to the broader fight against this growing threat.