With the release of the 2014/15 crime statistics, and what can only be described as a national outcry over their contents, the South African Insurance Crime Bureau (SAICB) have released a set of their own statistics for the period.
Their statistics show changing trends and hotspots in South African crime “which have had a direct impact on insurance claim costs and frequency” the SAICB said.
While the SAICB admit that their data cannot form a complete picture of the challenges faced in South Africa, their data can snapshot crimes committed against individuals such as vehicle theft, theft from motor vehicles, house robberies and vehicle hijackings.
The biggest takeaway from the data appears to come in the 13.8% decrease in vehicle theft – totaling payouts in excess of R900 million.
While the face of this decrease may appear positive, SAICB CEO, Garth de Klerk, notes that it only belies a shift in criminal agenda with vehicle hijackings up 29%:
“The decrease in vehicle theft directly affects the increase in hijackings as it is becoming more difficult to steal a vehicle, which leads to criminals resorting to more violent methods.”
This trend is repeated in the captured data as we see that house robberies have decreased by 12%, with business robberies bearing the brunt of a 24% increase. De Klerk notes that “as crime adapts to changes in society, so must we to reduce the scourge.”