When considering the purchase of an under-counter or intelligent safe for your hospitality venue, it's important to remember that not all safes are created equal. In fact, some are poorly constructed and will get you into strife with your insurance company if you were to try to make a claim. On the other hand, certified safes are tested to meet stringent accreditation standards required, and should see you down a safer road (excuse the pun).
Why is it important that a safe has been certified?
A certified safe has been tested for function and durability by an independent organisation to ensure the safe fulfils your security expectations and meets insurance standards. It's important to note here that testing is carried out by an independent organisation. One with no beneficial interest in how secure a particular brand's safe is, enabling them to provide an impartial rating which can be trusted by consumers.
A certification will also come in handy when taking out a policy with your insurance provider. The insurance company will require a certain level of security in order for you to make a successful claim. For instance, if you plan to leave cash overnight in your venue's intelligent safe, ATM or CRT, you will need to ensure you have a 24-hour or night-rated safe installed. If not, it's likely your insurance policy will be invalid.
Common safe certifications
In Australia, there is no official body or testing criteria that are used to measure a safe’s security level and provide a security rating and certification. However, trusted and reliable manufacturers will have their products tested internationally so they are able to be certified to an acceptable level of security.
For example, Underwriters Laboratories (UL) is an independent safety consulting and certification company in the United States. UL provides a standard known as UL291, which covers machines such as under-counter and intelligent safes, ATMs and cash recyclers. This standard requires equipment to meet a certain level of security against money theft as well as modification of its transaction records.
Within the UL291 there is further classification:
- Business Hours - these safes are to be used only within business hours, under supervision of venue staff
- 24-hour - also known as night-rated, these safes offer acceptable security for them to be left unsupervised out-of-hours.
On the same level as the UL standard is a CEN L CIT rating, from the European Committee for Standardization (CEN). The CEN standard covers all the same things, they just use a different testing formula.
Purchasing a certified safe
By purchasing a certified safe or device like an ATM which contains one, you are purchasing with confidence - you know a premium quality safe is coming into your venue.
Reputable suppliers, like Banktech, will list their safe certifications in their product materials and on their website. If not, be sure to ask your sales representative about what certifications their products have as a part of your due diligence process before your purchase.
In general, the safes themselves will have a label on the inside of the door, or on the top of the inside of the door listing their certification and where it came from. Ensure you are on the lookout for a reputable and appropriate certification like UL291 or CEN L CIT for your ATMs, CRTs, cash recyclers and under-counter safes.
Remember, if you plan to keep cash in your machines overnight (saving your venue on labour costs and you in time!) without jeopardising your insurance policy, look out for the words "24-hour rated" during your research.
It's not just a certified, 24-hour rated safe that you have to be on the hunt for when purchasing a cash redemption terminal (CRT) - there are many other considerations too! To assist you in choosing the best cash redemption terminal for your venue, download the Ultimate Cash Redemption Buyer's Guide for your venue here.