As the world is growing more and more, businesses are improving their reach and scope, generating better revenues and bringing in more money. This money is quite often noticed by unwanted people who might want to break into your shop/office when you don’t suspect and take away something valuable, causing you losses.
Burglary is a big issue in many places of the world, especially busy marketplaces with lots of shops. The notion that there is safety in numbers is an illusion; it only lets burglars blend in with the crowd to stalk a shop/gather information. Also, many small and medium shops may not have enough bandwidth to install expensive CCTV camera systems with 24/7 surveillance. Also, employing a security guard is not risk-free.
Here are 5 cheap, but effective ways to reduce the chances of thieves/burglars from targeting your workplace
- Install Dummy Cameras
While a full-fledged CCTV system may not be a very cost-effective method, a dummy camera surely is. All you need to do is bolt-up a few dummy cameras at various points in your shop and put-up a board saying, “You Are Under Surveillance.” Most burglars stalk from a distance and occasionally visit the shop a couple of times, but never do they try to pry into the owners’ monitors. A dummy camera costs about 1/10th the actual price of a system and looks pretty much the same – enough to deter the burglar from targeting your shop.
2. Active Socialization with Neighbours
This is especially effective when you’re new to the area. Most burglaries happen in newly opened shops where the owners don’t know the people around them and where trust-factor is low. It goes without saying a friendly neighbour can come to the rescue when you are not around. Surprisingly, more than half of burglaries are committed in broad daylight, in shops where people don’t bother looking after each other’s backs.
3. Change Locks – Install Deadbolts
As far as nights are concerned where most shops are closed and no one would be able to come to your rescue, an age-old technology comes into the picture – locks. The only difference we suggest making here is to change the traditional locks and install deadbolt locks which cannot be pried open since there are no springs. They don’t cost much and installing an entrance door behind the shutter would also cause a delay in the burglary – and most thieves are not patient while stealing. Chances are, they will choose to leave instead of wasting time.
4. Add Shatter-proof films to windows/glass walls
Most modern shop-décor themes involve use of glass to give a glimpse of what’s inside to passers-by. This, however also becomes a risk for attempts to theft as a simple brick can shatter the glass, saving time for the thief and creating an easy entry-way. Glass-break sensors and alarms are reliable but expensive. On the other hand, shatter-proof films are easy to procure and applying them can be a very easy DIY project. These films do not let the shattered glass pieces fall down keeps the structure intact. Your burglar will have to throw in extra efforts while breaking in, causing a very uncomfortable delay.
5. Motion Sensor Lights
Motion sensors have become increasingly cheap over the last decade and are fairly easy to come by. Many shop owners are seen installing them in their shops to make automatic doors. Well, the same technology can come to your rescue someday. Just install lights outside your shop, attach them to a motion sensor to light up accordingly, and you have a credible deterrent to keep unwanted hands at bay. Couple it with your dummy cameras, and the thieves would think twice before going ahead with the robbery.
While great deterrents, these methods are only meant to ensure a potential threat decides to skip your shop while attempting a robbery and a determined thief will do whatever is possible to get their hands on your valuable assets. Also, most crimes involve the perpetrators taking mostly cash since that is easiest to take and make a run. Not keeping cash in the shop’s drawer and instead of keeping it in a bolted safe/putting the money in the bank is again a great idea
Also, taking time to remove expensive show-pieces/merchandise from the view while closing for the day is an additional precaution you could take if you have glass windows/walls.
In a Nutshell
Being alert and smart can go a long way to protect your shop from intruders and having your hard-earned money and valuables taken away. While thieves are getting smarter day-by-day, they also know better than to target a shop that could get them caught. More often than not, simply letting a potential criminal know that committing a particular crime may not be worth it is sufficient and prevents the crime from happening altogether.
Also, if your entire marketplace neighborhood starts being actively involved in preventing such incidents, burglars would either be forced to leave or find a bit more honorable professions to earn their livelihood. Either way, it is always a good start for a safer and happier marketplace for both shoppers and shopkeepers.