When was the last time you brushed up on your burglary and theft prevention plan? Businesses are vulnerable to crimes committed by former employees and strangers who are looking to commit crimes of opportunity. You can deter both kinds of crimes with relatively simple measures on the outside of your property. Here are eight ways that you can prevent burglary and theft at your property.

1. Move the Merchandise

While some stores have a lot of merchandise in the front windows, those that have a higher risk of theft usually keep their front display free of their actual product. That way, those walking by with ill intent aren’t tempted to simply break the glass and take your goods. Even if breaking your glass is a challenge, people will still try it and damage your glass in the process. Changing the glass is annoying enough, even if nothing is taken.

Essentially, when a crime appears to be easy, it is more likely that people will attempt it. That doesn’t mean you have to have a boring display in your front window, just one that doesn’t appear to be valuable. Use bright colors, photos, signs, and props to make an engaging display.

2. Use an Access Control System

What about past employees? They don’t need to scout your front window to get close to your product. Using a key can make your building vulnerable when dissatisfied employees leave, and changing locks can be an annoying process if you have to do it frequently. It’s wise to use a digital access control system where you can revoke anyone’s permission to enter the building without needing to change a lock.

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3. Add Lighting

Those who have ill intent and are stalking around your property don’t want to be seen. They know that the more they are seen, the more likely it is that someone will catch onto what they are doing. Therefore, they tend to pick businesses with as few lights as possible to steal from. You can make your property less likely to be the target of theft by adding lighting, especially to side and back access points. Thieves will avoid walking around in the light, so the more you can add, the better. However, if you can only add a few lights, try to place them strategically at access points, such as doors and windows.

security camera

4. Obvious Cameras

Security cameras can obviously help the police identify burglars and thieves after they’ve committed their crimes. However, they are perhaps more useful as a tool to deter crime before it even happens. If someone knows that they are being filmed, they are much less likely to commit a crime.

So, exterior security cameras should be obvious enough that anyone can spot them while walking by. Of course, you also need to keep them high off the ground so that they aren’t easy to tamper with. It may be best to get a professional security company’s opinion on exactly which cameras are best for you and where they should be placed on your property for maximum effect.

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5. Security Staff

A security team is an excellent way to deter crime, even if it is a bit of an investment compared to other items on this list. There’s nothing like a human being to respond to potential threats and deter criminals from even trying to enter your building in the first place.

You don’t have to take on all of the logistics of a security team yourself. Many companies exist solely to contract out their security teams to other businesses. Once you’re working with them, they may also have other good ideas about how to make your building more secure, so that their staff are safer too.

6. Add Fencing

Some businesses have large, sprawling properties that are challenging to survey, by camera or with a security team. These businesses can rely on very tall, secure fences to do most of the security work for them. In fact, it may not be necessary to fence the whole property. Having large fencing in the most publicly accessible areas may be enough to convince people that the whole property has fencing.

If you do add fencing to your entrance, you can use a monument sign out near the fence to make sure that customers and other guests still know they’re at the right place, and don’t feel intimidated.

7. Change the Landscaping

Bushes, shrubs and trees may provide cover for those who wish to scout your property to plan out a crime. You might be tempted to remove them all, but that can also be a mistake because great landscaping can benefit your business in so many other ways. Instead, try to keep your large landscaping away from the building so that they don’t provide coverage when people get close. Also, try to keep them well-trimmed. And, if you really want a shrub somewhere that it’s ideal from a theft prevention standpoint, then make it a thorny shrub. No one will want to get close to one of those.

8. Reinforce Your Door

Rusted, broken, or old doors are all signals to would-be thieves that your property could be broken into easier than your neighbor’s door. Getting obvious visual flaws with your door fixed can help your building project a more secure image.

Discouraging theft is half the battle, but sometimes people will attempt to break into a door that does look secure. If you suspect that someone might try to force your door open, you can reinforce it with a large metal bar. Doors with this safety feature equipped are called steel stiffened doors. The metal pole runs vertically through the door, making it significantly more challenging to break open.

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Ready to make your business more secure? At CLAD, we can get you the best metal security doors, from high-end brands such a Curries, Steelcraft and Ceco. We can also install a better access control system so that your former employees can easily be denied entry to the building.