to Reduce Shoplifting
If you're in
the retail business, you know it's one
matter to prevent theft after hours, when buildings are empty, lights
are off, the alarm is on, and doors are locked. Keeping out
shoplifters while you're open for business, is a whole other
story. An annual survey reported that last year, more than a fourth
of the $35 billion in lost sales was caused by shoplifting.
No one wants
to alienate customers with undue suspicions and inconvenient security
measures. Prevent shoplifting in a discreet, friendly way,
by training your employees to do the following:
Greet everyone. This
is a good business practice, because it presents your store as a
welcoming, safe environment. It also sends a message to potential
shoplifters that they are not anonymous, unnoticed browsers, who can
do as they like.
especially if you notice a customer who seems to linger in one area
without touching or browsing. He/she may simply be a confused buyer
who needs help understanding the product line. But
if they are a shoplifter, waiting for an opportune
moment, they now know it's too late.
private shoplifting log. This can be a white board or a notebook
in the back room, someplace customers will never see. It's a
community diary in which your employees can write down suspicious
incidents, such as customers who enter and leave repeatedly, or who
linger in spots that are hard to monitor. They can give descriptions
of the person in question, and log losses that may have occurred that
day. That way everyone can be on the same page, and know what to
watch for in the future.
Door to Door
Seems like it
never fails. Every sunny, Saturday afternoon tends to come with a surprise
caller or two at your doorstep. Between the Girl Scouts' cookie
drives and local kids selling candy bars for school, you're
likely to open up to dozens of perfect strangers each year.
nothing wrong with being neighborly. But if the person standing on
your front porch is not easily identifiable, it's best to be cautious
about opening the door.
Burglars have come up
with a clever way to pillage in broad daylight by acting like
legitimate door-to-door salesmen or trades people. They usually
present a bogus reason for showing up, such as an electrical problem,
or a water issue you know nothing about. They will try to
distract you with a sales pitch.
will get you to walk with them outside, around the corner, to a spot
where you can no longer see your front door. While they have your
attention, the accomplices walk right in to help themselves to as
much cash and small valuables as they can carry.
So how do you
tell the difference between a Boy Scout and a burglar? Check their
ID. Any reputable employee of a county office or a utility company, will have a ID card on them at all times.
If you're not convinced by the card, call the company in question and
double check that they sent someone to your home. If you're alone,
and unsure about the person who wants in, play it safe, and keep the
Automation on a Budget
has come out with a very clever light switch. For around $50, you can
install a basic WeMo system on your home
network, and control your household lights from any iPad, iPhone, or computer. For $50 more, your new
switch comes with motion sensors that can be configured to turn on a
light the moment you walk into a room. No more dark, scary hallways
or fumbling for the switch when you walk in through the back
What else can
you do with an automated light switch? You can trick those cruising
home invaders while you're away. It doesn't have to waste
electricity; just a quick on and off in the front room can throw a
potential burglar off. .
This is a
great buy for those who want to test out the waters of home
automation gradually, since there is very little cost or risk
involved. Even if your wifi connection were
somehow compromised, a light flicking hacker is scarcely more
dangerous than the average, bored toddler.
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We offer a
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Thank you for
reading our December issue. See you next month!