‘Tis the Season for Break Ins

Christmas is fast approaching as we enter peak season for break ins. Businesses across the UK prepare for goods to fly off their shelves while logistics gear up to move stock from warehouse to store and from store to customer. But on the outskirts another type of business watches with hungry eyes waiting for the chance to strike on a weak link in the chain.

Most criminals don’t steal so they can keep the goods, they’re stealing so that they can sell them on. Sometimes it’s individuals, sometimes it’s teams of criminals hunting the streets for an easy target. This time of year markets – online and off – are full of money-strapped customers looking for cheap gifts, which is the perfect opportunity for criminals to quickly sell stolen goods.

Warehouses packed with potential gifts are especially vulnerable as they tend to be in secluded areas that are unpopulated during the nights. Those nights are also longer in winter, giving criminals a larger window of opportunity while the colder weather keeps potential witnesses off the streets.

Black markets account for roughly 10% of the UK economy, so remember that you’re competing against gangs with a lot of manpower who are willing to invest in their success. To counter them, you must invest in your protection.

To assess the security of your business, you need to think like a criminal. For the profit to offset the risk, they need to steal goods that are easily sellable and in high demand to minimise the time spent sitting on stolen stock. Clothes, alcohol and small electronics can all be carried out by hand, bundled into a van and shifted at a market the next day.

The trade of stolen goods is big business, and like any successful business they’re experts in their field. They know that CCTV and alarms rarely ever result in convictions, while police arrive long after the damage is done. Unmanned security is great to prove to an insurance company that a crime was committed, but it does very little to stop them happening. All it takes to beat CCTV is to cover your face, and balaclavas are hardly a big investment for a criminal enterprise.

If a van full of criminals drives past your business and sees no guards, you’ll be put on their list of easy break in targets. Perhaps they don’t strike that night, or even the next, but one morning you’ll return to find your stock vanished and your property vandalised.

Just recently we were approached by a business who were the victims of multiple break ins at their unmarked supply warehouse. The perpetrators took off with a sizeable amount of luxury stock, no doubt already sold off to Christmas shoppers. Instead of enjoying the most profitable months of the year, their business was turned into a crime scene while they negotiated with insurance. Worst of all, the criminals now knew they were easy pickings.

To protect them from any future break ins, we equipped them with our fully trained, monitored and supported security staff. The next time their warehouse is scouted by criminals, they’ll see actively patrolling security in high visibility jackets that are impossible to miss.

The vast majority of businesses Magenta protects never experience break ins again. Security guards aren’t there to catch criminals, they’re there to deter them, better than any fence, camera or alarm ever could. And if the worst does happen, they’re backed up by our control rooms and mobile patrols who are able to respond within minutes of a call.

So don’t spend your festive season worrying that something far worse than Santa is coming down your chimney. Call Magenta today to find out how we can give you a silent night.

Abbey Petkar

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