Tips For Protecting Your Business

The following information is re-printed from a brochure issued by Edmonton Police Service:

How likely a criminal is to target a business is based on how vulnerable or secure the business is.

Problems can include:

  • Weak entry points
  • Poor/cheap building materials or older structures (rust, decaying window/door frames, etc)
  • Seasonal variations (Summer - usually oopen windows or doors. Winter - increased chances of forced entry)
  • Staff members who are careless about security
  • Unlocked or open doors and windows
  • Multiple keys given out
  • Few or no security devices (studies show that criminals prefer to avoid businesses with alarms installed)
  • Sight lines into the property (poor lighting, visibility/obstructed views, isolated location)
  • Businesses near major roads or alleys

Steps For Prevention

  • Install double-cylinder deadbolt locks on glass paneled doors.
  • Make sure window locks are designed and located so they cannot be reached and opened if glass is broken.
  • Move merchandise away from windows after closing.
  • Use strong, well-built doors. For entrances on any side of a building not easily visible to neighbors, solid core doors with minimal or no glass should be installed. Doors with large areas of glass should be used in locations visible to neighbors or passersby.
  • Secure skylights, air ducts, attics, crawl spaces and vulnerable areas shared by other businesses. Any opening can be a potential entry point.
  • Install see-through fencing or plant thorny bushes to make it more difficult to access your business; howerever make sure that these additions do not decrease the visibility of your property.
  • Keep premises and surrroundings clean and well maintained to communicate that the owners are in control of the property and vigilant.
  • Trim and limb up shrubs and trees so they do not provide hiding places for the buglar, especially near entranceways.
  • Do not store lumber, pallets or crates near buildings. They offer easy access to upper windows or roof. Keep ladders locked up.
  • Install lights outside that stay on all night or are motion detectors.
  • Leave on enough interior lighting after business hours to detect movement. Make sure that blinds or curtains do not block visibility.
  • Secure valuable inventory is secured cages or safes.
  • Anchor safes with bolts so they cannot be carried away.
  • Change the combination every few months and anytime an emplyee leaves.
  • If you choose to install an alarm, be sure to test it on a regular basis and make sure that employeesare properly trained in its use.
  • Keep a record of all merchandise and equipment serial numbers; this will help recovery in the event of burglary. Secure this information in a fire-proof safe or safe deposit box.
  • Install a surveillance camera system. The quality of the pictures are important for identification (license plates, facial/clothing descriptors), camera should adjust for darkness and light, angles of the camera should be considered.
  • Devise a control system for all keys. Keep a record of who has keys to the building or store. Engrave all keys with "Do not duplicate". Consider changing locks annually or after an employee has been terminated.
  • Lock up all important files and /or computer backup disks.
  • Make sure your business address is visible from the street.
  • Report suspicious behaviour to Edmonton Police Dispatch at 780-423-4567
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