Paul Lawrence


As the festive season approaches and the nights get longer, businesses are preparing for the Black Friday rush as online shoppers spend their hard-earned cash in preparation for Christmas. Many shoppers use Black Friday to stock up on gifts for loved ones, so ensuring parcels reach their destination without disruption is essential.

Reports speculate that Black Friday spending will hit a record high this year, with 66% of UK shoppers planning to spend more than they did last year. However, this increased spending comes with an increased risk for drivers and goods, as criminals take advantage of the darker nights and bigger, often pricier loads, in the last leg of transportation.

Parcel theft is already a soaring issue in the UK, with a 59% jump in thefts reported in 2023 compared to previous years, so ensuring goods get to their destination, and drivers are free from harm, is a key priority for operators.

Installing high-quality internal and external camera systems provides a holistic overview of every angle of a truck or van, improving overall vehicle security from the inside out. Internal cab cameras are often used for monitoring driver behaviours, such as fatigue or drink driving, however, a camera feed recording directly inside the cab allows fleet operators to see who is behind the wheel should a stolen vehicle be reported. New forms of cloud-based camera technology are configured to detect any incident a vehicle may have been involved in. This technology automatically uploads all event footage and data directly to a web-based platform for analysis, meaning operators can access footage remotely and report incidents and evidence to authorities within a quicker timeframe.

Internal cameras can also be installed in the cargo bed to act as CCTV, giving businesses peace of mind knowing that if anything should happen to the festive goods, gifts or drivers, there will be evidence of the incident through video recordings. Taking the initiative to install internal cameras can also offer financial benefits for operators, with lower insurance premiums rewarding those taking additional safety measures.

Protecting a vehicle and its contents also comes down to external camera monitoring, having a clear view of the surrounding area and those operating in it. Although external cameras are commonly used in the case of accident prevention and driver aid, there are still additional security benefits to installing a full 360° camera system. External cameras can capture additional elements of incidents, such as the direction goods may have been taken from or identifying the features of surrounding cars potentially involved in the wrongdoing.

For operators concerned about theft of cargo containers, equipment or vehicles during the festive period, around the clock asset tracking is an integral foundation to a vehicle’s security system. Not only do tracking devices act as a deterrent against theft, but this technology also improves the chances of recovering goods and vehicles, with cloud-technology offering live location updates from anywhere. Ideally, these tracking devices would be installed in two different locations as an additional measure of precaution, and should one tracker be removed, the back-up tracker can still provide recovery information.

The holiday period is an extremely busy time for fleet drivers and operators, tackling an increase in online shopping and deliveries, as well as longer nights, which can put drivers at the receiving end of criminal activity. However, making simple additions to a vehicle’s safety system can make all the difference to ensuring a successful delivery.

Paul Lawrence, MD, AddSecure UK, North America and Australia