A new remote-controlled locking device, invented in Europe, is offering a revolutionary solution to the problem of fuel theft across Nigeria.
Text-Lock Technologies, a technical start-up based in the UK and Spain, has recently secured the rights to develop and supply its remote controlled locking, status and level monitoring systems to True Reflection Ltd., a solutions integrator to road haulage fleets in Nigeria.
The concept of the Text-Lock is simple: the cargo is secured at the point of loading and remains so until the controller is happy to grant access, from anywhere in the World, via a mobile phone or Web interface, while logging what, where, when and by whom.
The Nigerian road transport industry has a well-documented problem with the theft of fuel oils in transit. With 80% of all oil delivered by road tanker and usually only protected by out-dated security, stealing fuel while in transit is attractive to criminals. Apart from the consequences to industry, perpetrators and drivers can be injured and or even killed in this highly dangerous pursuit, and some operators are resorting to armed guards in an attempt to combat the problem.
MD of Text-Lock Technologies, Oliver Reavey, says simple and ubiquitous technology makes our system so attractive. ‘Mobile phone networks enable us to provide a secure and cost-effective remote-controlled locking discharge valve that protects and also monitors the fuel cargo, saving the industry many millions of dollars.’
It is not just the Nigerian fuel oil industry that stands to benefit from using the Text-Lock. Allowing for the protection or release of goods, parcels, even groceries, by simple text commands, text-locks can be fitted to any door or box until its owners are ready to release it securely. These features offer benefits to anybody or company that move goods.
Next, Text-Lock Technologies plan to assist in the remote controlled security of shipping containers; especially those destined to move around the globe by ship and road, passing through multiple handlers between source and destination. The fight against human trafficking alone makes the adoption of this technology inevitable.