Even if a client has kidnap and ransom insurance, prevention is far preferable to having to go through the ordeal of being abducted. To this end, it is vital that clients are educated about the risks of kidnapping and how best to avoid them.
It is important to understand the local environment that a client is visiting or operating their business in. Obviously, employing aggressive tactics such as employing ex-military professionals for security or using armoured patrols will decrease risk, but understanding the local environment can be just as beneficial.
Most insurers that offer KRE insurance will have travel information available for travel to high risk areas and how to mitigate the risk of kidnapping. Some even offer training. There are many measures that are both simple and practical, and on the surface seem obvious, but often do not occur to people unless they feel threatened. “Arranging the cover further protects people because most insurers offer safe travel and crisis management guidelines and training for their policyholders to make them more aware of the risk and the practical measures that can be taken to safeguard themselves,” explains Ettridge.
A few risk mitigation techniques to advise clients of are: to not travel the same route every day, even if they are going to the same destination; travelling at different times to avoid falling into any sort of routine that a potential extortionist could learn and exploit; when travelling it is important that your client doesn’t appear like a wealthy businessman, as this immediately highlights them as a potential target and they should avoid wearing suits and carrying businesslike briefcases. Advise clients to not take the first taxi offered, but rather arrange transport prior to arrival and confirm their driver’s name, and preferably car license number, so as to be sure that they are getting into the right vehicle.
Constantly being aware and double checking facts and details is a great way to mitigate risk, but the sad truth is that there is no guarantee of safety and criminals will continue to kidnap and extort whether KRE insurance exists or not. “Unfortunately kidnappings will happen with or without the existence of the cover,” concludes Ettridge.