Sunday, 16 October 2011

How to Prevent Theft at Your Business

Even if you have commercial insurance to cover loss from theft, the process of making a claim can often be time consuming and tedious. You may also see an increase in your premiums if you frequently make claims. A few relatively simple measures can help to prevent theft at your place of business, making your life easier and keeping your insurance premiums low.

Burglars prefer the cover of darkness to commit crimes. The more visible their actions will be, the less likely they are to commit them. If your business is in a quiet part of town and most of your premises are obscured in darkness, you are much more likely to be robbed. Invest in outdoor lighting and keep your indoor lights on. To avoid added electricity costs, install motion sensors so that the lights will turn on only when necessary.

Outdoor barriers
While fences and other barriers can be climbed by experienced burglars, the more obstacles you put in the way of your place of business the less likely burglars will be interested. Unless the gains to be made outweigh the extra effort, robbers will take the path of least resistance. If there are two businesses next to each other, with the same expected gains, they will rob the one that is easiest to access. Having a fence could make the difference.

Doors and windows
All exterior doors should have a deadbolt that extends at least 2.5cm into the jam. Exterior doors should be made of wood, in a solid-core or rail-and-stile construction, or metal. Windows should have a locking mechanism that is not easily pried open from the outside. Consult a security expert to determine exactly what your business needs.

Alarm system
If you have insurance, it is in your financial interest to invest in an advanced alarm system. You will see a reduction in your premiums that will pay off the system in a number of years and save you money in the long-run. Talk to a security expert about the types of systems available within your budget. Also, consult your insurance company to see what kinds of alarm systems will save you money on your premiums.

Checks and balances
The greatest threat to your business could come from inside. Employee theft is often a much greater problem than burglars. Make sure that you have checks and balances in place to reduce the opportunities for theft. Keep track of which employees have access to cash and regularly have managers provide oversight.

Last, but certainly not least, a robust commercial insurance policy is essential when it comes to protecting your business. You may not feel that your business is threatened, but in an unpredictable world it's heartening to know that you're covered.

While these basic tips will certainly help to prevent loss from theft, you may wish to consult a professional security expert. They can give you detailed advice on specific measures you can take to prevent theft at your business.