The car and fuel industry have changed dramatically over the last fifty years. In the year 1960, there were only 2 million cars on the road worldwide. Fast forward to 2019, and the world now has over 1.8 billion cars on the road. This has led to a rise in the number of fuel stations and convenience stores, which now conduct millions of transactions a day. With the changes in technology, these transactions are fast and easy, which makes them easy targets for criminals and fraudsters.
Convenience Stores: A Convenient Target
The transition from full service, to pay inside, to eventually paying at the pump has been the most opportunistic for these criminals. Instead of having to steal cash, they can now put credit card skimmers on the pump, wait from a remote location, and gather people’s personal payment info without having any confrontation. While technology may have opened these avenues, it also helps close them. Using cards with chip readers, digital alerts for tampering, and cameras have cut down on some of this opportunity, but nothing measures up to having a physical presence on site to deter these criminals in the first place. For that reason, many convenience stores are now turning to private security companies to provide that presence.
Not only do these security companies help prevent skimmers at the pump, but they can also help keep the storefront welcoming. Convenience stores are often a place where homeless congregate, which can deflect potential customers from going inside in fear of being confronted. Getting customers to shop inside is an important aspect for these businesses because the margins they make on food are substantially higher than fuel and is important in keeping the store profitable and open.
Another important role for private security at convenience stores is to prevent robberies. Because of the small store layout, low number of employees, and easy access, convenience stores are one of the most frequently robbed businesses. In order to keep their employees and assets safe, many owners are hiring private security for the late-night hours.
Despite being a relatively easy target for criminals to strike, there are some systems in place that store owners can implement to mitigate loss. Whether or not you employ a private security company, these steps have been proven to help decrease incidents on store property.
- Ensure your store is properly staffed during peak times
- Utilize video surveillance, if available.
- Maintain proper exterior lighting
- Cash control and drawer audits on a regular basis
- Limit building access to as few doors as possible
- Train employees on proper emergency response
- Develop a relationship with law enforcement
While these steps are useful in curbing possible threats, adding a physical deterrent in the form of either a dedicated, or roving patrol officer is the most effective and efficient way to fully deter criminal activity. Outsourcing to a private security company could be an option, as it would help your store’s bottom line and allow you to focus on the other aspects of your business.
Signal Security: A Convenient Solution
Signal is one of those private security companies who has recently began this type of security. Signal offers custom solutions to each of their clients, so the store owners can pick the services that best suit their needs. This cuts costs for the store owner while still getting the result they desire. Some of these solutions include:
- Pump checks (Skimmer prevention)
- Random Patrols
- Dedicated door staff
- Armed guard (not available at all locations)
- Building lock-ups/lock checks
- And more!
Signal is locally owned and operated by local franchise owners, so their desire to make a difference in the community is far greater than that of a large security conglomerate. These owners are always available and work to form a true partnership with their clients.
With highly visible patrol vehicles, professionally trained guards, custom solutions, and an owner you can count on, convenience store owners can be sure that Signal 88 Security will help them continue to stay profitable and secure.
To find out more information on Signal 88’s services or to request a free site assessment, click here.