Technology & software

How Can Retailers Protect Their Businesses From Security Threats at a Time of Economic Downturn

Security is of paramount importance to businesses in retail. Whether it’s the prevention of break-ins, employee theft, or shoplifters. According to recent data from the Office of National Statistics, UK police recorded theft offences increased by 15% to 1.5 million in the year ending March 2022.

Additionally, Merseyside’s Police and Crime Panel has reported a ‘massive’ rise in supermarket thefts linked to the cost-of-living crisis. With reports of theft rising as the economic downturn and cost-of-living crisis hit home, retailers are looking for new ways to combat the age-old problem of theft without deterring genuine customers.

So how can retailers balance keeping staff and customers safe, as well as their products, without deterring genuine, paying customers?

Beware of Offputting Security Trends

New trends in security systems are emerging as more retailers are increasing security measures based on the recent figures of increased thefts. Retail giant, Sainsbury’s is resorting to locking chocolate bars in old DVD security cases in some high-risk stores. Although this protects their product and security is paramount, it’s important that it’s not to the detriment of aesthetics and the overall customer experience.

Security measures can be subtle and in keeping with the brand identity without losing functionality. For example, the replacement of solid shutters with ones that still allow for point of sale and window displays to be seen maintains aesthetics and brand image and allows retailers to continue to display goods.

security threats

The Best Security for Your Business

Many businesses such as independent stores and high-value shopfronts are often rushed into making decisions that don’t consider their needs or meet all of their security requirements. Security is not a one size fits all solution.

Weighing up Your Options

Shutters are perhaps the most important theft prevention measure for a business. Which are the most suitable for each business will depend on many factors, such as how often they will be opened and closed throughout the day.

Depending on the daily usage of the shutters they will require suitable motors to accommodate the operation and avoid expensive maintenance issues. Surveyors can help you consider all the factors of your security shutters including integrating with existing security solutions to find the best security for each specific business.

When there is a greater commercial risk there is of course a bigger security risk, which is why the SR2 and SR3 graded shutters ought to be considered for such businesses. They effectively protect against more motivated intruders who are more experienced in forcing entry into a storefront.

Businesses should look out for the gold standard of LPS (Loss Prevention Standard) tested, shutters that are assessed against break-ins using specific attack tools for set durations to ensure their enhanced performance.

Another solution is tube and link shutters, stored in discreet smaller housings, which offer an alternative to bulky shutters that detract from the look of storefronts, and instead offer low visibility functional security.

Take Security Seriously

Security is undoubtedly a priority for every retail business, and taking the steps to find solutions that work for each business and are adapted to specific needs will prevent any unnecessary loss or theft from impacting businesses in the future.

Paul Neighbour has worked within the industrial door industry for over 40 years, having started out as a Door Engineer in 1989. He progressed to a technical sales surveyor with Guardian Doors and subsequently went on to work within LBS Group and currently serves as a surveyor with Roché’s security department offering expert advice for high-profile projects throughout the UK.