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How safe is your cash?

Money Insurance and Cash Protection Principles

Frequently businesses are seeing a decreased use of cash as a method of payment. There has been a definite increase in the use of credit cards, and more recently the use of electronic direct deposits, but some customers will from time to time make payments in cash. We often see a spike in the use of cash when there is an increase in foreign exchange and with the Australian Dollar climbing again, it may be beneficial to revisit your procedures to keep money safe.

How safe is your cash?

What is Money Insurance?

It may sound obvious, but money insurance covers cash and many other negotiable items against loss. Money can be insured:-

  • In transit or in a bank night safe
  • On premises during normal business hours
  • On premises outside normal business hours
  • Whilst contained in a securely locked safe or strongroom
  • In private residences

Money can be insured for some of these categories or alternatively a “blanket” cover which includes various combinations of these depending on the type of business insurance policy you have.
If the amount of money your business handles has increased, it is very important to review your sums insured to accommodate these changes.

Protecting Cash

Some of the things to keep in mind:-

  • Protecting staff and members of the public from physical harm must be the paramount consideration. Measures to protect cash must be avoided if they increase risk to your staff or the public.
  • In any business that handles excessive amounts of cash, all staff, not just cashiers, must receive adequate “bandit training”. Would-be heroes can get themselves and others hurt, and the instruction of “no resistance” must be thoroughly understood.
  • Management and staff must be vigilant, encouraged to report persons acting suspiciously eg. sitting in a car observing the premises
  • There must be clear instructions never to discuss cash and security where it may be overheard.
  • When staff take money to the bank, are times, bags and routes varied?
  • Keeping cash and counting operations out of site of the public is essential so as not to attract the attention of would-be criminals.
  • Physical and electronic security measures should be of a high standard and obvious. If it is difficult to get into cash holding areas and proceeds are limited with a high likelihood of the criminals being detected or recorded on camera, it is more likely that criminals will choose to go elsewhere.
  • Preventing thefts of opportunity requires that cash is NEVER left unattended, on desks or in unlocked drawers. Thieves will often have others create a diversion.
  • Always keep cash locked in an approved safe, especially after business hours (most insurance policies have very low thresholds on money not locked in safes after hours).
  • Cash is always a tempting target for burglars and it is unwise, after hours, to rely on a safe or intruder alarms on their own.
  • It is important to have an effective detection alarm raising system and provide a delay by keeping cash within an appropriate cash-rated safe in the alarmed area
  • Do not leave money in envelopes on desks – in generic envelopes, small or large amounts of cash can accidentally end up in the bin! It happens more frequently than you would expect.

These are just some suggestions and are in no way a complete list, or a guarantee of protection, but reviewing your procedures constantly is a step in the right direction.

Finally remember to check your insurance policy and if necessary, increase the sums insured on your Money Cover.

If you would like further information or an obligation free Insurance quote, please contact Rebecca Fleming, Manager of our Travel Division at Gow-Gates Insurance Brokers on (02) 8267 9919 or to discuss your circumstances or to obtain a quotation.

General Advice Warning – the information in the above article is intended as a guide only and should not be relied upon without consulting your relevant insurance policy wording and conditions or conversely seeking professional advice from either your insurance broker or insurer regarding a claim or potential loss. Failure to adhere to this warning could result in a denial of a claim or potential loss or a reduction in settlement of a claim or potential loss.