I had a call from Tom Scott to alert me to a recent series of forced entries. Whilst I have always endeavoured to avoid either selling or advertising anyone’s products, I felt that this information needed to be shared and so I asked Tom to write the following piece.
“After a very quiet period when the Organised Criminal Gangs “OCGs” activity was reduced by the difficulties associated with travel during Covid-19 lock down, I’m sorry to report the OCGs are back leaving us at Fog Bandit very busy.
Looking at recent Fog Bandit installations following burglaries, retailers need to be aware of the favoured method of operation of these gangs to not fall victim to them. According to reported incidents from around the country there is again a number of these gangs active. These OCGs fall into two types.
The blunt force units who ram their way into a business and leave within a 2 to 4-minute period with the targeted stock. This group do not care whether the alarm system works of not as they use response time to an alarm activation to enable them to carry out their raid and escape successfully. They are not worried about CCTV as they always wear balaclavas and disposable clothing. We have seen examples of this in the cigarette storage and phone store sector where they raise the roller shutter enter the shop throw a blanket on the floor and break down the door to the stock room. They then throw the stock into the blanket, pick it up and then leave putting the blanket into the boot of the car. I have seen this entire process carried out in less than 90 seconds. In this type of burglary, we find the alarm does not activate (due to long entry exit times) until the raiders had left. This gang type is well trained, well-coordinated and totally focused on their mission. We have succeeded in stopping them several times using Fog Bandit to drive them back. Example 1
This gang targets convenience store and filling station type of business. These targeted businesses are normally located on the edge of town or a village where response time is long. The target in the business is the safe or ATM located in the building. The method of operation to cut the alarm communications. Then the raiders activate the alarm on site and record the GSM traffic from the alarm system. They then retreat, taking cover to watch the response.
After the responders have left, possible putting the incident down to a false alarm or an aborted burglary attempt, the raiders then enter the building and simultaneously start to transmit the GSM alarm data from a location possible up to 2 kilometres away.
At this stage no further information relating to a burglary will be transmitted to the alarm monitoring company from the business and in fact if the GSM is programmed to transmit a regular handshake that handshake will continue to be sent from the cloned GSM unit 2 kilometre away. Now the burglars have the building to themselves. These gangs come with their tools to enable them to make precision cuts into ATM units, safe fixings, cash points and cigarette stores.
How can business fight these types of attack?
In the case of the first type of raid. The alarm system needs to be configured as follows:
The type 2 burglary
Trust your alarm if it activates there must be an identifiable reason for an activation. Forget about spiders, wind, and other excuses for unidentified alarm. If you do not trust your alarm system you need to be in hard conversation with your alarm supplier.
Develop a standard response procedure to all alarm activations. If you have an unexplained activation do not leave the building unprotected. It is much cheaper in the long run to pay for a manned presence on site than to address the recovery costs following a major burglary.
Confirm how your alarm system communicates with your monitoring station and if not satisfied consider a wireless mesh option. You are paying for this service (have all of this explained in written plain English to you by your alarm provider)
Use Fog Bandit as an additional layer of security to drive Burglars out and provide up to 50 minutes of dense Fog while waiting for responders to arrive. Example 4
Thank you, Tom,
JDM Insurance Services Ltd