In my former life in logistics, this is huge problem and from what I read today the shift from hijacking electronics seems to be moving over to drugs. In the Los Angeles area there’s a group called “Cargo Cats” that is up to date and uses technology to track and find such shipments. The thieves are organized and within a few hours sometimes, the stolen good are already loaded on a ship going out of the country. It was not unusual for the drivers to be locked up in the truck trailers when the cargo was removed. I used to do business with Pfizer in my logistics days and there’s really not enough that can be done to help prevent some of this without using modern day technologies. Counterfeit and stolen drugs is a huge problem. If you happened to see 60 Minutes recently they did a good story on how dirty and crappy factories create fake drugs, scary as they make their way to the US and all over the world. Bar coding is the answer for both stolen and counterfeits as a nice heat map can identify their location once scanned. It may not be the criminals scanning but rather a consumer but this would help the authorities track the trail. There are some efforts being made, but more is needed soon. Pfizer is not alone and all pharma companies are targets. This could work with over the counter, prescription drugs and for medical devices. BD
Two truck drivers from the Netherlands – missing following the theft of two trucks carrying Pfizer medicines in Russia earlier this week – have been found unharmed. The two men – aged 60 and 25 – had not been seen since March 13, leading to fears for their safety. The two trucks were subsequently found empty and abandoned, with the license plates removed, in the Saint Petersburg area of Russia. Russia is emerging as a hot spot for cargo thefts in Europe, especially in main cities such as Moscow, Novosibirsk and Saint Petersburg, according to security specialist Freightwatch. Armed hijacking by fake police is the most common modus operandi for cargo thieves in Russia, and in a report published in 2009 by Eurowatch, virtually every listed cargo theft incident in the country involved the use of automatic weapons.