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Forecourt crime rising

Forecourt crime is continuing to rise, according the latest data from a not-for-profit trade body, BOSS. Its ‘Forecourt Crime Index’ for the period from April to June 2017 has risen by five points in the quarter to 121 (Q4 2016: 108) and by ten points in the year to the end of June 2017 (Q2 2016: 111).

That index is based on No Means of Payment (NMoP) incident reports that are made to BOSS as part of its Payment Watch scheme. During Q2 2017 the BOSS Index has risen to 121 a rise of five points from the previous quarter (Q1 2017: 116), and up 10 points in the year to the end of June 2017 (Q2 2016: 111). Since the index base quarter was established (Q2 2015: 100) the Index has risen 21 points.

In the year ending with Q2 2017 the average number of incidents recorded per site was 24.3 with an average incident value of £40.30 meaning that the average initial loss per site before any Payment Watch recovery reached £979, up from £860 in the previous year.

Kevin Eastwood, executive director at BOSS, pictured, said: “The rise in the BOSS Forecourt Crime Index is being driven by a rise in the number of NMoP incidents suffered by the average site and is a symptom of a growing problem that needs to be tackled.

“The police do not record incidents where drivers claim to have no means of payment but BOSS Payment Watch does monitor thousands of incidents that have been reported and, through careful analysis, we are able to identify multiple offenders. Where there is clear evidence of fraud, or theft, then we report offending vehicles. This can help to recover money for retailers and deter further offending.”

Forecourt crime is estimated to cost retailers more than £30m annually with some two thirds of crime resulting from ‘drive-offs’ and the remainder from NMoP incidents. BOSS adds that since its Payment Watch was introduced more than £3m of NMoP losses have been recovered and returned to retailers.

About BOSS

Formed in 1991 by the oil industry, membership is available to UK fuel retailers and oil companies. BOSS is supported by the Dedicated Card and Payment Crime Unit (DCPCU); the Financial Fraud Action UK (FFA UK); the National Police Chiefs’ Council (NPCC, formerly ACPO); the Scottish Business Resilience Centre (SBRC); the Scottish Grocers Federation (SGF); and the United Kingdom Petroleum Industry Association (UKPIA). Visit


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