Laying the Foundation

Crime Prevention Starts at the Ground Level

Take a hard look at the business - its physical layout, employees, hiring practices, and overall security. Assess its vulnerability to all kinds of crime, from burglary to embezzlement. Some basic prevention principles include:
  • Consider the cost of each security improvement you make against the potential savings through loss reduction. Remember to assess the impact on employees and customers.
  • Establish and enforce clear policies about employee theft, employee substance abuse, crime reporting, opening and closing the business, and other security procedures.
  • Keep detailed, up-to-date records. Store back-up copies off the premises. If you are ever victimized, you can assess losses more easily and provide useful information for law enforcement investigations.
  • Mark equipment -- registers, adding machines, calculators, computers, typewriters -- with an identification number (for example, tax identification or license number). Post the Operation Identification warning sticker in your store-front window. Keep a record of all identification numbers off the premises with other important records.
  • Provide training for all employees, including cleaning staff, so they are familiar with security procedures and know your expectations.
  • Use good locks, safes, and alarm systems. If you have questions, seek the help of law enforcement.