Safety for businesses and shoppers
Small businesses – the entrepreneurs and “mom and pop” shops in your community – might not always have the kind of security budgets that bigger players have at their disposal, but there is still a lot that can be done to protect these small and medium enterprises from crime and criminals.
Whether you are an owner, employee or visitor to a business, keep the below in mind.
We continue to see businesses being targeted during opening and closing times. If they know there is something worthwhile to take, a small window of opportunity when a staff member is vulnerable is all criminals need. To avoid being targeted, business owners need to prioritise safety and get security in place which is linked to an armed response service.
Preventing an incident
Businesses are encouraged to scrutinise their security, from the perimeter inwards – or, better still, have a risk evaluation done by a reputable security company. Good security starts with your perimeter and should be peeled back, like the layers of an onion, right to the core.
Members of staff also need to understand that they cannot leave their crime-prevention sense at home. Almost any crime that can happen at home or in a neighbourhood can happen in the workplace. Staff and customers need to be as vigilant and security conscious, as they are at home.
What to do when criminals strike
Do not resist, and assure the assailants that you will cooperate. They must see that you will not take any action that will jeopardise your safety, and that you are not planning any quick or unexpected movements.
Another piece of advice to remember, is to follow the instructions of the armed assailants. Do not argue with them, as they are in control. If they instruct you to take something out of your pockets such as a wallet or phone, tell them what you are doing and why you are doing it.
Most shops and restaurants have panic alarm buttons, and it is important that staff know where these buttons are and how to use them.
Police will later need detailed reports and every bit of available information, as part of their investigation. This is why it is important to make mental notes of the robber’s appearance. Be as detailed as you can. Look out for tattoos, jewellery, and colour of their eyes, the clothing they wore, their height, age and weight. Also listen out for anything they say to one another. We have found that it is often very helpful if police are given a description of the shoes worn by the suspects, especially if they dump the shirts or jackets they were wearing.
We encourage you to stay alert and vigilant at all times. It is also important to report suspicious activity as soon as possible.
Article with thanks to Fidelity ADT Western Cape