Client Portal

Insight into the Armored Car Industry

The armored car industry, once called the cash-in-transit industry, has come to represent a wide array of products and services that meet the needs of business owners, government agencies, and security managers all across the country. To date, approximately sixty carriers provide armored car services in the United States, and each year these companies are responsible for the safe transport, storage, processing, and management of billions of dollars in assorted types of valuable assets.

For most retail businesses and financial institutions, the safest and most secure way to handle coin and currency operations is by outsourcing them to licensed carriers. Many carriers are forever staying on the cutting edge of the latest in currency management, investing in state-of-the-art facilities and top of the line vehicles. Over the last several years, the armored car industry has seen an influx of growth, and the increasing demand for cash management services is likely to drive growth exponentially in years to come.

Click Here for more information about armored car services and the impact it can have on your business.

Products and Services

Each carrier will likely use slightly different terms to describe the products and services it offers. Terms like currency processing and cash management are interchangeable; both terms refer to the processing of currency. Similarly, one company may refer to the process of transporting valuables in a vehicle as cash-in-transit services while another may call it armored services or transport services. Ultimately, it’s more important to understand these different types of products and services than it is to know the nuance of each carrier’s specific titles.


Cash-in-Transit is a service that is vital to the daily operations of many businesses. It involves picking up cash or valuables from one designated location and dropping them off at another. While this service is simple, it remains a cornerstone of most carriers’ business. Carriers employ their fleet of armored vehicles to transport these assets, and the single most important rule of these cash-in-transit transactions is to always be sure to get a receipt. Cash-in-transit crews usually include two people, though carriers may decide to enlist the skills of three people when there are more valuable assets on board or when providing services in high risk areas. 

Cash Management

Though cash-in-transit services are the largest money-maker for carriers, cash management is a close second and continues to close the gap. Cash management refers to the process of verifying, reconciling, processing, storing, forecasting, and managing customer cash totally and seamlessly. Cash management usually offers carriers the greatest return on their investment because risk issues are easier to manage and processing currency in a safe, stable environment under supervision. There are no variables like traffic, robberies, and accidents with which to contend that can be detrimental to overall profits.

Coin Processing

Not all carriers offer coin processing services, but the ones that do are skilled at storing, processing, packaging, managing, and distributing coins. A significant amount of loss and theft are tied to lazy handling of coins, and these discrepancies often take much longer to discover, delaying the point at which an investigation can begin. It’s vital to hold on to CCTV footage for at least ninety days in order to be sure that footage exists in cases where theft or loss is being investigated. While carriers are typically not responsible for any losses after a certain period of time, customers may request manifests for items delivered over a year prior.

ATM Services

It is commonplace for ATM services to be delivered alongside cash-in-transit services. Depending on the carrier, it is not uncommon for a full ATM service package to encompass the purchase and installation of the ATM, complete maintenance service, cash replenishment and processing, as well as total management of ATM-related funds. It’s important to be mindful of the fact that servicing an ATM in an area that experiences a heavy volume of customer traffic can be extremely dangerous, and should be done with the utmost care.

Valuable Storage

Some clients may be in possession of valuable items that need to be stored for long periods of time without requiring additional transport. These items may be precious metals or stones, hard drives, and valuables. Daily audits are necessary to securely store these items.

Electronic Safes

Electronic safes are generally used by retailers who have experienced internal theft issues or rapid turnover in conjunction with significant cash to be reconciled at the end of each day. Electronic safes can also help reduce management downtime, allowing more time to provide customer service and manage team members. These safes come in a variety of sizes, and carriers will develop partnerships with different manufacturers in order to offer a number of services. When an employee places bills into the safe’s bill validator, which will verify the bill’s denomination. Each electronic safe provides audit reports at the end of every business day, and they also have the ability to detect counterfeit currency to some degree. 


Malls or shopping areas that do not have a bank may have stationary vaults that can be accessed by store owners. These vaults may be used to retrieve customer change orders. This service is generally less expensive than others offered by most carriers because it requires less manpower on the part of the armored crew. 

Virtual Vaults

Some clients, like banking institutions with multiple branches, may choose to employ virtual vault services, which help reduce shipping charges from the Federal Reserve Bank. Using a web based virtual vault system enables faster processing and reporting with greater accuracy, while allowing customers to easily access their data for their own business forecasting. Additionally, virtual vaults empowers customers to gain new business in any area where a carrier’s vehicles operate. 

Due Diligence is Key for Carriers

Despite the updates and innovations that have been made in the technology and systems employed by carriers, there are three factors that have consistently protected customers and carriers alike: integrity, financial strength, and a substantial insurance policy.  When choosing a carrier, it is critical to perform due diligence by looking into the carrier’s financials and learning about the details of their insurance policy. It’s vital that a carrier’s insurance policy is able to cover the full breadth of its operations. Furthermore, it is imperative that a carrier be able to pay back any potential losses in full in the event that their insurance policy refuses to pay out a claim submitted by a customer.  No matter the size of the carrier’s operation, performing due diligence is essential. Before selecting a carrier, it’s recommended that you verify that the carrier is known for making repayments of claims in a timely manner. 

Another vital factor to consider when searching for a high-quality carrier is the amount of training and caliber of training their employees receive. Each employee should have roughly forty hours of training in the classroom, with special focus on firearms, driving, and security skills. This classroom training should be complemented by on the job training and continuing education through on-going certification. It is not uncommon for carriers to lean on their training programs as a selling point for customers. Well trained crews also lead to better customer service, risk reduction, larger profits, and employee retention.

As part of the due diligence process a tour of the carrier’s facilities may be requested. During this time, it’s important to observe the equipment that is being used, the standards of dress and behavior to which the employees are held, and the security protocols, like cameras, that have been implemented.

Risk Management

Armored transport is an industry that is largely built upon risk management. Carriers are required to find the delicate balance between risk and profit. Of course there are attacks and other unforeseen circumstances that are impossible to predict or prevent, but there are also several measures that can be taken to minimize risk. Examples of risk management efforts include cash and coin audits, policy reviews, CCTV systems, and back-up generators that can provide support to operations in the event of a power outage or power failure.

Carriers and vendors alike can take a number of actions that help ensure the safety of valuable assets. These seemingly simple tasks, like using good quality plastic bags to transport and store funds, can make a dramatic impact in managing risk. Furthermore, businesses and other financial institutions entrust carriers with highly sensitive and confidential information, which means that taking proper measures to protect that information can help reduce risk to a significant degree as well.

Carrier Team Members

Perhaps the most vital factor in risk management lies in the hiring process. When a carrier employs the right people who follow protocol, abide by their training, and take their work seriously, there is a significantly lower margin for error.

During the hiring process, carriers should screen candidates with thorough background checks to uncover any criminal history, problematic motor vehicle history, and credit issues as well as employment history and references. Drug testing should also be mandatory. It’s also crucial that carriers hire professional, seasoned interviewers to interview candidates and ask pertinent follow up questions to suss out any falsehoods. In some states, carriers are permitted to issue polygraph tests as part of the hiring process.

Leadership is also deeply responsible for managing a successful armored car operation. Team leaders must understand how to properly balance risk management with profit without increasing the threat to team members who are on the frontline.

It’s important to keep in mind that carriers who continue to invest in new technologies that maximize internal efficiency continue to lead the industry. By investing equally in people, equipment, and cutting-edge technology, armored car carriers can continue to grow and flourish.

Ready to get started?

Talk to us today to learn more about how your business can benefit from our services.
Let's connect! Use our contact form or call us directly at 1-800-844-5576


4328 E. Magnolia Street
Phoenix, AZ 85034
5765 Logan Street
Denver, CO 80216
© 2014 – 2024 Blue Line Protection Group. All Rights Reserved.
Nevada Private Investigator License #2034 | Nevada Private Patrolman License #2034