Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

  1. What exactly is

The Plant files (TPF) is a Plant and Equipment registration and security scheme that records all the security features including covert, overt and concealed markings, markings that make each piece of equipment unique. It records the presence of security deterrents, tracking systems, RFID chips, Data Tags, transponders and DNA markings and rewards the owner by star rating the data provided. The scheme acts as a powerful theft deterrent and in the unfortunate event of a theft will provide the Police with an invaluable aid in the recovery process.


  1. How is my machine protected?

All machines registered with TPF are fitted with a tamper-proof registration plates that is securely fitted to the body of the machine. Each tag displays a unique reference code made up of a combination of 6 letters and numbers along with a QR code. By entering the Registration Number in the ‘Check ID’ field on the website, the system will confirm that it is registered. Once a theft is reported, the Police and Port Authorities will be able to view the unrestricted file. Access to the file can be obtained by using the Phone App and/or QR Code reader. Again, restrictions apply to the general public.


  1. Why can everybody not access the entire file and why is it a ‘Restricted’ file?

You can appreciate, it would be unwise to give everybody an All Access Pass to the Plant file. Divulging the location of all unique markings, Identification numbers, Transponders etc, to the Thief would be counter-productive and compromise security. The ‘Restricted’ file offers the facility to compare the photos displayed on the website and /or phone app to that which is being viewed on site.


  1. What is an ‘Unrestricted’ file?

An ‘unrestricted’ file is one that permits only the owner and its nominees to view the file it its entirety. This facility is extended to the Police and Port Authorities once the plant is reported stolen.


  1. Do I need to register a machine if it is already registered with CESAR?

Yes! By registering with CESAR you have, or the manufacturer/distributors have already taken a significant step towards looking after your plant. The triangular stickers attached to the machine or plant indicated that it is registered on its secure database, it has tamperproof stickers attached to the chassis, has Datatags, transponders and DNA covert security features added. However, if and when a theft occurs, the owner will report the theft to CESAR and the Police. It will then be recorded on the Police National Computer in the UK, alert PANIU (Plant & Agricultural National Intelligence Unit) and Europol/Interpol of the theft. However, access to this file is exclusively restricted by design to the owner and the Police.

TPF on the other hand will allow the owner to report the theft in real time to the Police, Port Authorities, auction rooms and network members – all in real time. It alerts a potential buyer to the theft and sways the balance of power away from the thief/ unauthorised seller. If the Plant is registered with TPF and with CESAR, then once a theft is reported, CESAR will be alerted directly and all the above actions will be implemented immediately.


  1. How does the Star Rating work and does the Plant get a star rating for being registered with CESAR?

Here’s how it works:
1 Star – Supply 4 contemporary photos of the Plant, front, back and two sides elevation photos.
2 Star – Supply Manufacturer’s Unique Identification numbers, Serial, Chassis, PIN, VIN, Transmission numbers etc.
3 Star – Supply information such as dints, scratches and unique markings. There is a facility to tag photos to each marking description.
4 Star – Registration with CESAR or other approved registration schemes. The Triangular tag number will be inextricably link to the relevant Plantfile.(Usually only applies to self-propelled Plant & Equipment)
5 Star – Approved Tracking and/or Immobiliser systems. (Usually only applies to self-propelled Plant & Equipment)


  1. Why is it important to reach a minimum 3 Star rating?

Imagine your valuable equipment has been stolen and you now have to explain it to the Police /Gardaí. They may not even know what it looks like? What you have described to them could be a telehandler, yet they may be conjuring up images of a pallet forklift? So, the Plantfiles allows you to record the most important details, 4 elevation photos, basically, what does it looks like, Star 1, record Manufacturer’s ID numbers and tag them to respective photos gets you Star 2 and if you take photos of unique markings, it will get you, Star 3. This is your FREE Information and if recorded properly will service you well in the recovery process should your asset be stolen. Information is crucial and supplying quality information in real time to the Police is vital and will save you time and money. For a small effort now could save you a lot of grief if your asset is stolen.

  1. If the stickers are removed surely then the system doesn’t work?

Absolutely Not! The stickers are made from destructible material that if tampered with, break up into small pieces.That being said, even if the thief removes all traces of the sticker, the integrity of the Plant is not overly compromised on account of the fact that the stickers serve to inform a thief that the owner has registered the plant or equipment on the and has recorded all the Identification numbers and markings that are unique to the registered equipment. The thief doesn’t know which markings you have or haven’t recorded. He will wonder whether you have recorded photos of the dint on the door?, the stone chip on the windscreen?, the scratch on the dashboard?, or the rip on the seat? He simply won’t know! The most obscure recorded markings could be the most valuable information that positively identifies the stolen plant as yours. Even if he has it resprayed and replaced the driver’s seat, changed the Chassis number, it will still be traceable back to you, the real owner.

Basically when the thief reads the small print on the sticker he/she will be made only too aware of the risks associated with stealing your plant.

  1. Does the system work on all types of equipment?

The system works basically on anything that has a Serial Number. The system does not just target Plant and Agricultural Equipment as the name might suggests, but it equally works on small trailers, transport trailers, caravans, mobile homes, water craft, outboard engines, jet-skis, motor-cycles, cars, vintage cars & tractor, Quads etc.

  1. Do insurance companies give insurance premium discounts?

Yes. TPF powered by Product Fitter is approved by all the leading Insurers and discounts are available to the registered keeper.


  1. If my machine is stolen how much would it cost me if it was recovered by the Plantfiles?

The short answer is nothing! Unlike some ‘stolen vehicle registers’ TPF does not charge machine owners or insurance companies for recovery. TPF works closely with the Police and notifies them when a registered machine is stolen.


  1. If my registered machine is stolen what should I do?

You should immediately notify the local Police / Garda and obtain a ‘crime reference number’. Enter the crime number into the automatically generated Theft report and the system will do the rest. Alternatively and for ease there is also a secure 24/7 call centre (tel 0818 333 533). If a false ‘Crime Reference Number’ is entered, and a Theft Report is activated, then a penalty of €250 will strictly apply.


  1. How do the police determine the true identity of a registered machine?

If one or more of the registration plates is intact the police can get all the relevant details, just like for a car or van, from the PNC at any time of the day or night.
If the registration plates and manufacturers’ plates have been removed, the police can enter the machine’s description and search for stolen plant that match that description. When similar machines are found the Police can then look for recorded unique markings  such as the broken wing mirror, the scratch on the door etc. This may be all that is required to determine the true identity. If it transpired that the machine had been registered with CESAR, then the Police can use a special Datatag scanner to ‘read’ the Datatag RFID tags hidden in the machine. CESAR can give the police all the details they need from the unique number from just one tag. As a back-up the liquid Datatag DNA and Datatag Datadots® can also be used to categorically identify a specific machine.


  1. Is is just another Registration Scheme?

No, quite the contrary,TPF is not static, it is constantly changing with updates to photos, videos, service history logs,safety reports, ownership records and much, much more, giving the owner, hirer and buyer of registered equipment a secure environment to do honest business with like-minded individuals and companies.


15.  Can I sell my plant from within TPF?

Yes. You, the plant owner can choose to advertise for sale or hire any piece of plant or equipment registered on the system. Indeed, you could advertise for sale and for hire at the same time. This service applies only to assets that have an ID Tag number. Asset that have been reported stolen will not be displayed on the website for sale or for hire by default.

16. How much does it cost to advertise plant and equipment for sale and/or for hire on TPF?

There is no additional cost as it included in the Registration Fee.


17. What are the benefits of selling and hiring from within the website?

The aim of the system is to establish a secure environment from which to do business. It aims to network similar minded people who wish to do business openly and honestly. Buying from within the system will be much easier and less intimidating. The buyer will be able to interrogate the seller and the seller will be able to furnish the buyer with peace of mind by producing a Star rated plantfile. Furthermore, selling and hiring from within the Plant files is targeted at a select audience.


18. What do I do when I sell my Plant?

The buyer of your plant has probably done so because you have kept good records, a full service history, produced proof of ownership etc. Now, it is the new owner’s responsibility to carry on from from where you left off! He can do so by signing up to and becoming a member. Once this is done, the ownership documents can be transferred electronically from the seller to the buyer.


19. What do I do if the new owner does not want to become a member of the Plantfiles?

Simple, instead of transferring the data file to the owner, the file is transferred to TPF archives for storage. TPF become the trustee guardians of the file. The file will reflect that the seller will become the previous owner and the ownership record will show the buyer as the new owner. The buyer will be the legal owner, but the plant file will be retained within the system. The owner will be able to retrieve the file at any stage once a registration fee is paid in full, back dated to the date of purchase.


20. Does the seller retain a copy of the file after the plant is sold?

A Plant file takes two formats after it is sold the transferred file to the new owner is a live active file which can be amended and updated, whilst the seller retains a pdf read-only file which reflect only the records kept up to the point of transfer.

21. Can anybody reactivate a “Guardian file” ?

The Guardian file can only be activated by the owner of the Plant. If the Plant is sold on for a second time to a buyer who wishes to register the Plant, then the registered owner must reactivate the file inorder to transfer ownership to the new buyer. A reactivation charge will apply. Should the plant be sold on several time without transfer, then the current owner will have to trace back to the registered owner and each transaction will incur a administration charge.


22. If a theft occurs and the  file is require to be reactivated, can the theft be processed through TPF?

Yes.  However, the registered owner must reactivate the file inorder to report the theft through the system. There is an additional fee of €100 for this facility on top of the normal registration fee.


23. Can I generate a new Plant File instead of reactiving a Guardian File?

No.  By attempting to do this, TPF will inform you that the identification details being entered “may be cloned or have already being entered” for another Plant. Identification details can only be entered once in the system.


24. My Plant has TPF Registration Stickers attached to it, does that mean it is registered?

No.  TPF stickers serve to act as a deterrent. However, if the Plant is stolen and has not been registered then the stickers will serve no purpose. Once registered you can input all the plant identification details, activate a theft report and network details in real time.

25. If I record all the unique details myself and not on TPF, can I report the theft through the system?

Yes.  In order to avail of the system, you will be required to register the plant on TPF.  There will be a surcharge levy of €100 for a Theft Report if it is generated less than one calendar month after registration.


26. Do I need to insure the plant before I can register it on TPF?

No.  Insurance is not a requirement for registration, however, without insurance you are at greatest risk should it be stolen. Registering with TPF will undoubtedly improve your chances of recovery. By registering your plant and equipment you may be entitled to a reduction in insurance depending on the star rating obtained.


27. What is the purpose of star rating plant and equipment data entries?

At present the recovery rate for stolen plant and equipment is as low as 5%. It has been reported through numerous sources that 60% of data provide to the Police and recorded on the Police National Computer in the UK are poor, misleading, innacurate. TPF helps you as a plant owner to furnish the Police with accurate and powerful information. Quality information is graded from 1 to 5 stars. The reduction in premium and insurance excess charges will be invertionally proportional to the stars rating obtained.


28. Why do I need to obtain a high star rating when I don’t have Insurance?

Star rating not only helps you to obtain a reduction in your insurance, it will help the Police and network members find the plant should it be reported stolen. Furthermore, if you decide to sell or hire your equipment, star rated equipment will become  the evaluation barometer for prospective clients who register, access and use TPF.


29. If the Files show that an item of plant is insured, does that mean the plant is actually covered?

No! If the files are being managed by the Plantfiles administration team on behalf of the Insurance Company / Broker, then every effort will be made to ensure that the plant/assets reflect that which is on the Insurance Policy. However, thePlantfiles accepts no responsibility whatsover for the information entered on the system supplied by the latter or indeed by the plant owner. The Plant owner is advised that the Insurance Policy will in all circumstance without exception be considered the definitive legal document.