The Christmas and New Year holidays provide a unique opportunity for criminals. For two weeks or more, many service businesses will be entirely empty, leaving their offices full of expensive, easy-to-sell equipment ripe for the picking. Don’t let your festive period be ruined by theft and damage. Here are some easy measures you can take to keep your service business safe over the Christmas period.
People often overlook the most basic things, which end up coming back to bite them when their business is left unoccupied. Making sure doors and windows are locked and sturdy and that alarm systems are still functioning are obvious but often forgotten steps that leave a site vulnerable.
You should time your annual servicing of your alarm systems and any other security equipment just prior to Christmas, so that you can be confident that it will be working over the holidays. If your servicing takes place earlier in the year, your systems could have been down for months without you realising it, leaving your premises vulnerable.
Anything that’s portable or easily disconnected should be hidden away in a locked cupboard, secure room or externally stored. Phones, tablets, keyboards, laptops, monitors – if you can pick it up without any effort, so can a criminal.
For other at risk equipment that may be too much trouble to store, at least make sure that it isn’t visible through any windows, especially if you’re on the ground floor. Shutters or blinds will keep your valuable equipment hidden, and criminals are far less likely to take the risk of breaking in if they’re not sure what they’re going to get out of it. Taking such action will also help if the worst does happen and you need to demonstrate to your insurers that you took every precaution to protect your premises and your equipment.
It’s not just break ins that you need to protect against if your premises are unoccupied, there’s also the risk of a flood. Again, basic measures apply here: make sure all taps are closed, that drains aren’t blocked and close off the supply of water that won’t be in use.
Remember, even though insurance might cover any damages, if you only discover there’s been a flood after your return from the holidays the amount of damage could require weeks of repairs to get you back up and running, all the while losing you business and customer/client confidence.
The only truly effective way to protect against a flood is to have a static guard present on site. Mobile patrols will help you catch the flood sooner, but by then 24 hours could have passed, more than enough time for significant damage. Having a guard on site means the most the flood could be active for is their patrol time and they’re able to take immediate action to try and stop the flood, move equipment away and call in help.
Of course, the security you require will depend on the scale of your business, the risk to your site and the potential damages it would sustain if the worst did happen. We provide a no obligation risk assessment for all our clients so you can choose your ideal level of security, from keyholding and remote CCTV to mobile patrols and static security.
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