Seasonal Crime

Black Friday & Cyber Monday

(click here to download pdf)

 

Retail & Police Coordination

As we approach Black Friday, Cyber Monday and the run-up to the Christmas period, there is support and encouragement for a close working relationship between retailers, the business community, private security and police. Planning and partnership working has had a significant impact on preventing some of the issues experienced in previous years.

The following are tips that can help avoid violence and disorder, and keep the business community safe:

  • Take the opportunity to engage with the local crime reduction partnership;
  • Ensure that your marketing and security teams communicate with each other;
  • Ensure that you have sufficient staff on duty during the busy period;
  • Monitor your staff and ensure that you have established a clear policy on theft and security and give to all employees;
  • Ensure that you have multiple cash pick-ups throughout the day;
  • It is essential not to expose the public, your staff, security personnel or the police to avoidable risk;

Work closely with your in-store staff, security teams and police to make them aware of changes to opening times, to anticipate increased footfall and also queues that form outside stores prior to opening.

It is encouraging that many businesses have again decided to spread the Black Friday sales period across the week, rather than rely on just one day. In that respect, we recommend that you communicate these changes in timings to all store partners who can contribute to your customers’ safety.

If you have an online presence, it is recommended that you review your cyber security.

 


Local Businesses

(click here to download pdf)

Below is a list of do’s and don’ts to assist you to reduce and prevent the seasonal increase in retail associated crime such as theft and fraud.

DO:

  • Ensure good design and layout within your premises. Have you a good view of all areas
    of your store especially your expensive stock.
  • Use technical aids such as CCTV and mirrors to see into blind spots. Ensure they are in
    good working order and you know how to use them.
  • Ensure your staff are trained. Train staff to be observant and to engage customers
    early to make them aware they have been noticed.
  • Check for counterfeit notes. If you are not happy with a note do not accept it and
    contact Police. Be wary when large denomination notes are used to pay for low value
    items.
  • Secure your vulnerable areas. These areas include store rooms, warehouses, delivery
    areas and delivery vehicles where items may be present in bulk and easy to remove.
  • Monitor these areas at vulnerable times.
  • Shred all unwanted correspondence. This will assist in preventing identity fraud.
  • Check your alarm systems. Check these on a regular basis to see that they haven’t
    been tampered with.
  • Watch out for distraction events. Small teams may enter with a view to engage and/or
    distract staff whilst others steal items.
  • Get involved in ‘Shop Watch Schemes’. These schemes are an excellent way to
    disseminate information quickly following suspicious incidents
  • Report all suspicious instances immediately. Write down details of incidents,
    descriptions of persons and registration numbers of vehicles rather than rely on memory.

Change your routines when dealing with cash in transit. Vary times and routes.

DON’T: 

  • Keep large amounts of money on your premises. This includes your home address.
  • Display valuable items in your windows or near letter boxes. If you do, remove then
    during closed hours.
  • Change large denomination notes. Commonly referred to as ringing the changes you
    will be asked to change a large denomination note for smaller denominations or coins
    without purchase when attempts will be made to confuse you.
  • Drop your guard. Criminals come in many guises and may look quite respectable and may even have young children with them.

Remember that seasonal events like Christmas, generally mean more stock, more cash, more customers, more deliveries, more temporary staff and more opportunity to commit offences.

Please remember though, that this is one of the safest areas in the country to live and work. Crime is low, serious crime is lower still.

Prevention Works

If you require any further advice, please contact the Business Crime Advisor: Bogdan Fironda, tel 07920 814897, or e-mail bogdanfironda@warwickshire.gov.uk.