Microdot Technology News: CAR MICRODOTS COULD CUT CRIME Article 10
CAR MICRODOTS COULD CUT CRIME
At the request of the SAPS, the Minister of Transport will publish amended regulations to the National Road Traffic Act (Act 93 of 1996) to legislate the application of microdot technology in line with SANS 534-1 (SA's microdotting standard). Avis chief executive Wayne Duvenage says Avis is delighted with the legislation, which it believes will be an excellent deterrent to vehicle theft and a useful aid towards fighting vehicle crime in South Africa. "Avis was one of the first companies to embrace this crime fighting technology around eight years ago," he says.
Microdot technology is implemented by spraying the essential parts and panels of vehicles with thousands of dots that are invisible to the naked eye. A VIN (vehicle's identification number) can only be revealed by using specialised scopes to read the dots. These scopes can be used by police services to identify vehicles and vehicle parts, especially in instances where the original vehicle identification (VIN and Engine) numbers have been tampered with.
The technology will become compulsory for all new vehicles, vehicles the SAPS allocates new VIN (SAPVIN) numbers to and imported cars from 1 January 2011.
Understanding the use and successful implementation of "microdot" technology in Australia and other parts of the world, Avis and the South African Vehicle Rental and Leasing Association (SAVRALA) began to urge vehicle manufacturers to apply microdot technology to all their cars as early as 2003. "While the technology is excellent, its ability to become a highly effective vehicle theft deterrent and crime fighting tool has been hampered by the low number of vehicles to which it has been applied. While the police have embraced the use of this technology, with less than 7% of new cars being microdotted over the past five years, they simply can't get into an efficient mindset of using the scopes and methodology applicable to identify stolen or potentially stolen vehicles," says Duvenage.
He believes microdot technology will lead to the arrest and demise of many of this country's illegal chop shop syndicates. "We congratulate the Department of Transport for driving this initiative and look forward to seeing the long term benefits of this action," he concludes.
Graham Wright of Business Against Crime South Africa (BACSA) confirmed that SANS 534-1 is currently been revised in anticipation of the publication of the regulation amendments. "We are extremely pleased that our hard work has paid off and would like to thank all the players in the industry who have made this legislation a reality," he says.