The holiday season is often the most profitable time for a retailer. But it’s also often the times that thieves and scammers will be the most active. While some thieves may be more active during the holidays, simply because they’re looking to help their own finances, savvy thieves know it’s when you’re most vulnerable as a retailer.
Here are some of the most common scams and theft issues that small businesses run in to around the holidays, and the best ways to prevent them. These small business security tips will help make sure the holidays are happy for everyone.
- Shoplifting: The holidays are the busiest times for retail, and thieves know this. You’ll have a larger number of people in your store during this time, and your staff will likely be occupied most of the time. While you may not have one year round, it may be best to hire a security guard to keep an eye on things during your busiest hours. Also, make sure that you have a working video surveillance system to monitor things from above. Just the presence of a video security monitoring system is often enough to deter some thieves.
- Parking Lot and Entrance Safety: Around the winter season, you may find your entrance way or parking lot covered in ice or snow. “Slip and fall” scammers see this as a pristine opportunity to rip off retail stores. One of the biggest ways to prevent this is keeping an eye on your entryways via a security system. Oftentimes, these scammers will walk or act suspiciously before “falling.” Having a video record of exactly what happened could be incredibly beneficial to verify against a customer’s claim.
- Charity Scams: Criminals know that the holidays are a time for giving, and they’ll try to take advantage of your generosity. Especially during the holidays, you’ll encounter people going door to door soliciting donations for a certain charity. In this situation, it’s always best to ask for a pamphlet with more information. Just about every legitimate charity will have something to give you. Even better, if you want to make a charitable donation, it’s best to do it via the charity’s web site or over the phone.
- Burglaries: Most large retailers stay open during the holidays, but small business owners especially may close during the Christmas and New Year’s holidays. A store closed during the day lets potential thieves know that nobody’s around, so it’s often a time these stores are targeted. What’s the best way to prevent this? Test your security system before closing down for a few days. Having video evidence of a theft is a huge element of helping solve things after the fact.
- Identity Theft: Everyone is busy around the holidays, including your customers. Again, smart thieves know this. They know when your customers are at their most vulnerable. The holidays are prime season for identity thieves. You’ll need to make sure your computer systems are well encrypted, and make sure that your employees take proper steps to make sure a thief isn’t using a stolen credit card.
For just about every potential holiday problem a small business can run in to, video surveillance is an incredibly huge part of either preventing it or helping assist you once it’s happened. Whether it’s deterring it in the first place or helping sort out the details later. For more information on video security systems, visit www.supercircuits.com