Weapons and Kit

Revealed: What MOD Equipment Went Missing In 2020

New data has released that more than 420 computers, laptops, or USBs were among the equipment declared lost or stolen during the year.

Combat kit and defence-owned technology are among the items that were lost or stolen during 2020, according to new information from the Ministry of Defence (MOD).

More than 420 computers, laptops, or USBs were declared lost or stolen during the year.

Also, more than 3,500 rounds of ammunition were lost and body armour, helmets, and a helicopter dispatcher harness were listed as stolen.

The information was released in response to a Freedom of Information Act request which asked the Government department to state the items which had been misplaced or changed hands during 2020.

The list also included two diving knives and a hunting knife taken from RAF Brize Norton, and a Glock barrel and spring and personal range finder taken from RAF Honington.

MOD Cyber Keyboard White Fraud Online Scams Defence Imagery
The Ministry of Defence uses encryption to minimise the impact of missing laptops (Picture: MOD).

More than 40 respirators were also stolen from defence sites, along with cold weather clothing, tents, night vision goggles, bergens, a freezer, a television and weight training equipment.

The value of the theft offences was mostly unrecorded.

Data showed almost one laptop a day had been lost or stolen, but the MOD said it expected the real number was lower due to a system update which had temporarily hidden the laptops' locations.

Defence-owned technology - including tablets and laptops - is encrypted to minimise the impact of equipment losses.

The MOD requires all levels of policy breach to be reported, and states that many losses identified in the report are a result of accounting errors.