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Overseas Kidnappings: Policy and Response

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  • Overseas Kidnappings: Policy and Response

    We posted this story up earlier today about UK oil workers who have reportedly been kidnapped for ransom in Nigeria. It reminds of when I was in Ecuador a few years ago and an American oil company regional manager had just been kidnapped in the same province I was in.

    It brings to my mind the question of policy in dealing with these kind of scenarios. Certainly, this is something that has to be written into the security and crisis plan as companies become more and more international in their business nature.

    Let us know what your policy is on these kind of events. Does your company pay ransoms? How much involvement does the family of the victim get in terms of that decision? Are you using any international travel advisory services? What kind of policies do you recommend to your overseas employees in terms of reporting of their location during standard business-related travel?

    Post your thoughts here (anonymously if you like -- no need to spill the beans on a named company's policy), and let's share some ideas on these policies and your response to these incidents.

    G. Kohl

  • #2

    Great topic. Sorry I missed you at ASIS.

    Prior to 9/11 I actually worked for a company that provided K&R, high risk evacuations and such.

    There definately needs to be a written policy concerning the protocols of K&R and the rapid evacuation of employees from hostile areas. Some companies do this well, others have no clue.

    From my experience, western companies that have K&R insurance let the insurance company take total control once an incident occurs. Eastern companies operate somewhat differently.

    Families are kept informed but are typically not involved.

    A good resource for up to date travel info from the security side is They offer a free email travel status from around the world and are a good bunch to work with.

    For all the K&R info you need, try Control Risk is definately a world leader on such topics.

    Once a company acquires K&R insurance, the policies and protocols are pretty much dictated by the insurance provider and that becomes the guide book for employer/employee actions.