Hold-ups held down

The number of bank robberies nationwide has fallen considerably in the last five years

Bank robbers have generally been out of luck lately, as the number of bank hold-ups has fallen 70 percent since 2002.

Just five years ago, bank robberies were so common that they took place nearly two out of every three days across the country. There have been only 33 bank heists so far this year, compared to 222 for the entire year of 2002.

The sharp decrease in robberies is due to banks' increased efforts in deterring criminal activity, according to Stine Jensen, Jyske Bank's security officer.

'We believe the decline is due to physical security,' said Jensen, and mentioned video surveillance, time-based locks and better alarm systems. Jensen also noted that banks had arranged their office and customer areas into what is called the 'shop concept'.

'It isn't easy for a thief to operate in a room where people are sitting in all directions, where there aren't many counters to hide behind and where the service area is large and exposed,' said Jensen.

The battle against the bank robbers isn't over, however, according to Niels Crone Lyngkjær, security officer of the Danish Bankers Association.

'There has unfortunately been three large-sum robberies this year,' he stated, indicating that some banks are still poorly secured.

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