5 Tips to Protect Your Business from Burglary
Despite best efforts to protect themselves, business owners struggle to stop their livelihood from coming under attack. Unless they live above their pride and joy, they can’t be there 24/7. And with nearly 6 million businesses in the UK, that’s a lot of unprotected places.
Freedom of Information* has revealed over 600,000 businesses were victims of crime last year. With 109,391 burglary cases recorded, the majority of break-ins targeted small businesses across the UK.
FSB** data reports that 21% of small businesses don’t even report crime to the authorities. Faith in getting justice for crime has left more than a third (38%) stating that they don’t have confidence in getting a response from the police.
This comes as no surprise. Of the 606,282 crimes reported last year, 347,961 saw the investigation complete without a suspect even being identified.
When burglaries occur, there is a lasting impact of crime on both trade and staff morale, with owners suffering emotional distress adding unnecessary worry when running a small business.
There are some actions shops can take to protect themselves, so we’ve gathered five tips to demonstrate how small businesses can protect themselves in 2020.
Just like in domestic properties, many burglaries occur because they are tempted by what’s on show. Utilise lockers for your employees and ensure that their belongings aren’t left exposed, and make sure any other valuables are locked away at all times.
CCTV will protect personnel and property, and deter thieves – both internal and external. You will be required by the Data Protection Act and GDPR to put signs up informing people that they’re being filmed. It could mean the difference between a burglar choosing your business to burgle or another.
Review and replace your locks, especially if you think someone could still have access. Consider smart locks as although they have a higher initial outlay, you can take advantage of features such as audit trails and access control, which come in handy if you have a high turnover of staff.
Burglars and thieves will always use the cover of darkness if they can. That’s why security lighting can be such a great way to deter unwanted visitors, as they will detect motion and expose them to the street. Make sure your small business has no dark and shady areas for thieves to lurk.
Start a “business watch” scheme
A similar concept to neighbourhood watch, this is where a group of businesses in a geographical location will look out for each other, keep in close communication with each other and share advice and information. You could even share the cost of a security firm to provide physical security 24 hours a day.
The research shows the shocking scale and impact crime can have on small businesses. It is evident small businesses are the main target for break-ins recorded in 2019 and there is a strong possibility this could happen again.
Simple actions such as providing employees with a clear closing routine, upgrading security and getting to know your business neighbours could make all the difference when it comes to the protection of your livelihood.