What All Businesses Need to Know about Security
You worked hard to grow your business, and now you’re overseeing a store or office full of employees. Securing your equipment, revenue, and information is probably first and foremost on your list of priorities. So how important is business security? According to the FBI, a burglary is committed every 15 seconds. Property crime makes up 75 percent of all crime, which means the odds of your business being victimized are definitely not in your favor. If you’re thinking about enacting security measures to protect your business, you should have a good idea of where to start. Identifying your biggest risk factors will determine what kind of security system you need and what kind of extra precautions you should take. Remember, not all crime involves a thief breaking into the building after hours. The most important thing to know about security is that it must guard against a myriad of threats.
1. Location Determines Risk
When most business owners are choosing a location for their business, the choice usually comes down to visibility and price. But in all probability, safety should be the biggest concern of all. If you choose a safe neighborhood to set up shop, you lessen the chances you’ll be a victim of burglary, vandalism, and other crime. Before you commit to a building, you should investigate local crime reports, talk to neighbors, and even get the expert advice of a security company who is familiar with your area. You can still minimize risks, even if your location is less than perfect. The important thing is to determine how long it would take a criminal to access your valuables. Access to your business from the street will make it easier to rob you, especially if it’s easy to see in your windows. That’s why business owners take steps to make their facility look less appealing. Strategically-placed surveillance cameras usually work well in this capacity, as long as you make sure all entrances, exists and transaction points are well in range of the monitors.
2. Stopping Theft from Within
You might have concerns about how a burglar can gain access to your valuables, but statistically, business owners are far more likely to get robbed by their employees than by outside criminals. According to CBS News, employers lose 5 percent of their annual revenue to employee theft, adding up to trillions of dollars. There are plenty of precautions you can take during the hiring process, but background checks might not tell you everything. One practical solution; replace your old-fashioned locks with keypads. Limit the number of employees who have access to certain areas where the most valuable merchandise or supplies are stored. That way, when something goes missing, you’ll know exactly who had the code to enter a room. The right training procedures will also go a long way to stopping theft. When workers understand the extent of your security and how it works, they will be less likely to attempt bad behavior.
3. The Threat of Cyber Attacks
Security is no longer limited to physical crime on your premises. Online threats have become a huge issue for business owners, especially if you operate an office with a network of computers. The best way to combat this is to take inventory of all your PCs and other devices, as well as the software that’s installed on them. Two out of three small businesses have no formal security policy for online threats, which leaves smaller companies more vulnerable to hackers than their corporation counterparts. Hiring more than one IT expert should be a priority for your company, as well as making sure employees are properly trained on internet policies, anti-virus software, and how to recognize when something is wrong. Losing valuable merchandise is potentially devastating to a business, but losing important financial and organizational information because of compromised computer networks can be even worse.
Burglary, vandalism, dishonest employees, and destructive malware – the list of potential threats to a small business is long and varied. That’s why it’s important to search sites like securitysystems.net and find the right security system for you, which takes into account both your industry and your location. Don’t make the mistake of thinking theft can’t happen to you. The other businesses in your neighborhood are no doubt equipped with cameras, keypads, and alarms, which means, you don’t want to be the vulnerable target on your street. Identify your risk factors and cover all your bases and you won’t have to worry. Security is one more area where strong leadership can make all the difference.
Chelsea McCary is an frequent tech and safety blogger. You can follow her at @ChelseaMcCary to stay updated on the latest in security technology.