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The Museum Burglary

Security at the UiB

After the burglary at the University Museum the security at the UiB has been under scrutiny. Here are facts on the security at the museum and objects of value at the University.

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Monday the 14th of August we discovered that 400 objects from the University Museum had been stolen.

Bulding security

The objects stolen from the archeological collections had been kept in magazines since the 17th of March. The building known as the Museum of History (or the Museum of Cultural History) has, among other measures, boundary protection, motion detectors and on-call security.

In June scaffolding was installed due to building rehabilitation, making it possible to enter through the top floors of the building.

The scaffolding had an alarm connected to a security central. This alarm was set off twice Saturday the 12th of August, and the building was checked both times by a security company who found nothing suspicious. On Monday the 14th of August it was discovered that burglars had entered the building by breaking a window in the sixth floor, most probably from the scaffolding.

After the break-in measured were taken immideatly to improve safety at the museum. Due to security consideration details won't be released, but more motion detectors will be installed.

Thoroughly analyzed

In connection with the rehabilitation a thorough security analysis was done, in accord with the routines of the UiB and the University Museum.

Quotas for security systems were received through a request for tender. Extensive security measures beyond scaffolding alarms was planned, but a system failure caused the measures to not be implemented.

The University has reviewed its routines to stop similar situations from occurring again.

Securing objects of value

  • In 2012 we upgraded the access control facilities. This was done over a 4 year time period for all University buildings.
  • Upgrading the cultural historic collection building was started in 2014 and will be done in several phases. Part one comprises the tower building where the break-in happened. The process is done over a 4 year time period.
  • A new magazine building for the Museum and other collections at the Faculty of Humanities and the University Library is being developed. The preliminary project starts this year.
  • The UiB is strengthening its on-call security services, based on risk analysis. Due to the event at the University Museum an additional strengthening is being considered.
  • New secure magazines with climate control for better collection management is established in the Science Building and the mountain complex, with capacity for all the collections. Total investments 30 million NOK.
  • New high quality conservation laboratorium established in the Science Building. Investments of 15 million NOK.
  • Rehabilitation of the Natural History Museum at Muséplass 3. The construction is ongoing and will be completed next year, with exhibition opening in 2019. Investments of around 390 million NOK, financed by the Norwegian Ministry of Education and Research.