If the causes of shrinkage/shortage are known, appropriate measures may considerably reduce losses of volume, for example
- by better packaging.
- by more careful use of forklift trucks by qualified personnel when packing and unpacking containers, by using clearer and better labels and pictograms on packages.
- use special metal seals on containers with loads which are at particular risk of theft.
- record the seal numbers of containers sealed with metal seals in the cargo documents.
- monitor packing and unpacking operations.
- packages which appear to have been tampered with or are misshapen should be opened and their contents checked or weighed.
- stop printing company, promotional and contents information on packages.
- always use sufficiently thick shrink films on palletized goods.
- use packaging which complies with the modular system, i.e. length and width must be adapted to the container.
- in the case of particularly high value and sensitive appliances, such as computers, IT products and/or IT components, shock indicators should be incorporated into or attached to the packaging. If these indicators have been triggered in transit, the package contents must be inspected immediately.
- containers with particularly valuable goods must stowed with the doors of adjacent containers facing towards each other.
- apply UN ECE Guidelines for Packing of Cargo Transport Units, which have been published by the IMO and ILO.
Security companies may be used to avoid theft. An appropriate security company should be selected depending on whether the transport operations are national or international. Well-known security service providers carry out a pre-transport analysis to identify and eliminate any organizational weaknesses. Particularly valuable cargoes, such as IT products, computers, computer chips etc. are additionally guarded or accompanied.
- Particular attention must be paid to how the container doors are secured, for example with locks and seals; e.g. seals may be in the shipping company's colors or high security locks may be used.
- There is only very limited scope for the use of container locks due to the customs issues which arise when crossing borders. Container locks are used for domestic transport operations and for the transport of customs-cleared containers within and outside Europe.
- "Heavy duty" seals are disposable seals which are recommended for maritime transport.
- Bar locks, which lock the container door locking bars together, are also used for valuable cargoes.
- Devices are also welded onto the container doors for locking the container's locking bolts or bars.
- Other professionals use wire rope clamps instead of a lock. Once the wire clip has been fastened to the door bolts, the threads or bolts are damaged in such a way that they can only be removed with a heavy duty cutter/angle grinder.
- Padlocks may be more successfully used if they are enclosed in narrow metal tubes shrouding the locks. In this way, neither bolt cutters nor angle grinders can be used to attack the lock without first destroying the metal tubes.
As levels of criminality rise, it may be assumed that there will be ever increasing demand for appropriate solutions for securing valuable container cargoes. Selecting a properly qualified logistics service provider is essential to ensuring secure transport.