A friend proudly took me round his new business premises. He had pictures from the last 4 months of work getting the office shipshape. It was all ready for his staff to move in on the Monday. But his happy face turned into a frown when I asked about his security arrangements. After all that effort and expense, he had forgotten that there are people out there who want to spoil it all.
I took him through a few things that can make a real difference to keeping your business safe from burglary.
Make it difficult for burglars to get close without being seen
Keep the outside of your business tidy. Employ a regular gardener to keep any shrubs cut back. Don’t allow anything to obscure a good view of your doors – bins, cars, signs.
Install adequate lighting
Make sure there are no dark corners for a thief to do his dirty work. A great tip is to put your lights into bulb cages so they cannot be easily broken. And make sure any defective bulbs are replaced quickly.
Burglar proof your doors and windows
Invest in a solid door with 5 lever mortice locks. These are critical to a secure business. Don’t be palmed off with anything less. Check the hinges are located on the inside of the building. Deadbolts are also a good idea. Of course, there are also door entry systems operated by keyfobs.
Make sure you get window locks too. Some businesses swear by shutters but these can require planning permission. Others use attack resistant glass or apply a ‘film’ to make it more durable. One of the shops near us uses this. The windows have withstood several attacks from drunken revellers leaving a nearby watering hole.
Get an alarm system
Back up your great locks with an alarm system with PIRs that will alert you when someone comes near your doors and windows. Don’t just wait until the thieves have got inside.
Smoke gets in their eyes
A great way to stop unauthorised entry is to use a smoke-generating device. These activate and create a smoke screen that doesn’t damage stock but makes life very difficult for burglars.
CCTV cameras and monitoring
For complete peace of mind, get HD cameras that integrate with your alarm system and can be managed from your mobile phone. HD means great quality images that will help the thieves to be identified. Better still, organise 24/7 Police monitoring. This avoids the potential for you or your staff having to confront any intruders in the dark. But, remember, there are rules about cameras for business use.
You’ve worked hard and invested a lot of time and energy to build your business. Don’t let some toerag put a spanner in the works!