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Banknote security seminar

Police from across the country could get close to technology used against cash-in-transit crime at an event organised by the crime reduction partnership, Banknote Watch.

Attracting some 180 delegates from 11 police forces, the seminar and exhibition brought police together with manufacturers of the taggant technology used to trace stolen banknotes back to the scene of a crime. Presentations gave police details of the applications of this technology and the procedures they can follow to identify and trace stolen cash.

Banknote Watch seeks to raise awareness among police and the public that ‘a stained note is probably a stolen note’, and works with financial institutions and the private security industry so that criminals are less likely to profit from cash-in-transit crime. Hosting the event alongside West Midlands Police and ACPO Secured by Design, Banknote Watch invited several exhibitors.

Hilaire O’Shea, National Coordinator of Banknote Watch, says: “When police come across stained banknotes, unique taggant technology can help them quickly and easily trace them back to the scene of a specific crime, which can in turn help them track down vital supporting evidence to help secure a conviction.

“Each taggant has its own unique chemical code which shows up under ultra-violet light. This can attach itself to a criminal’s clothes or skin, or the inside of a car or home in which the stolen notes are stored. These solutions can remain traceable for years, so we wanted police to leave this event able to recognise the various solutions and understand the procedure they can follow to secure the evidence they need.

“Banknote Watch plays an important role in bringing Police together with the manufacturers of these solutions, as well as monitoring the positive impact this technology has on crime trends and reducing the risks faced by cash-in-transit couriers and financial institutions. We are delighted that the event was so well-attended, and hope to follow up with similar events across the country, to help spread the word about unique taggants as far and wide as we can.”

Welcoming delegates to the event, ACC Gareth Cann of West Midlands Police, said: “I have been hugely impressed with the commitment, dedication, support and effort from the [security] industry generally. Joint working and joint effort has been to everyone’s benefit.”

Meanwhile, Sergeant Andy Gregory of West Midlands Police Force’s Crime Reduction Unit, which hosted the event at its Tally Ho training centre in Birmingham, said that the event had provided an “opportunity to share information with 11 police forces from around the country and across the region.”

Geoff Knupfer of exhibiting company, Smartwater Technology Ltd, and Chair of the Asset and Property Marking Section of the British Security Industry Association (BSIA) added: “It’s been a great conference – we’re absolutely delighted at the turnout and the interest that’s being shown in some of the technology that’s available now in countering and combating ATM attacks and cash attacks generally.”

A selection of videos from the event are available to view on Banknote Watch’s YouTube Channel:


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