How To Prevent Theft

Preventing theft is any business owner’s desire. After all, preventing theft will decrease money wasted or lost due to missing inventory items and / or cash from the drawer.

Basic Tips:

  1. Install visible surveillance cameras and a security system and post ‘smile you are on camera’ signs in your store to deter theft.
  2. Talk to nearby businesses to check on their store security, any challenges or news that they have encountered in the neighborhood, and what they know about the area, etc.
  3. Research crime statistics and common burglary trends that have occurred in the past.

Inventory Management

  1. Check inventory levels daily. Track and record sales numbers vs. inventory levels. Complete daily counts of phones and cycle counts for accessories.
  2. Be extremely careful when receiving inventory.
  3. Check all trash from store doors to dumpster.
  4. Open all bags and break down all boxes received. Inventory can be lost from simple human error or deliveries tampered with while in transit.


  1. Keep the sales floor neat, clean and organized. This will allow you to see any inventory discrepancies with a quick glance.
  2. Look for hidden merchandise in your store behind sales counters or in corners. Products that are mysteriously found in odd places could be warning signs that they were placed there for ‘pick-ups’ by customers or employees.
  3. Keep stores partially lit after closing and have motion light sensors. Lock all cabinets, back office, front door, and cages.
  4. Some stores have poles installed in the front of the store to prevent vehicles from crashing in the front windows.

POS System

  1. Audit cash register drawers daily. Decide on a fixed amount the cash register should hold (such as $150 in cash and coins).
  2. Take out excess cash for daily bank deposits and store separately in a gun safe in a back office or area.
  3. Move entire cash drawer from POS area and place in a safe for the night.
  4. In the morning, during business hours, two people should take daily deposits (excess cash over $150) to the bank, not only for protection, but to verify the correct amount of funds.

Staff Management

  1. Post and inform employees about written guidelines and store policies.
  2. Hold employees accountable.
  3. Set corrective action policies in advance.

Does your company have policies, like these, in place for your company?

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