Burglary, vandalism and malicious damage is costing UK businesses a fortune. For most, business security is a key priority. It is estimated that 1 in 5 businesses will be negatively affected by crime. Businesses working across different sectors face varying risks and threats, but who from?
A recent report published by the Home Office – Crime against businesses: findings from 2018 Commercial Victimisation Survey explores the key cross sector issues that contribute to crimes against businesses in the UK:
• Online crime (not covered in this article)
• Organised crime,
• Anti-social behaviour.
Organised crime is defined as serious crime planned, coordinated and conducted by people working together on a continuing basis (National Crime Agency definition).
Of the sectors covered in the above Home Office report, the agriculture, forestry and fishing sector had the highest proportions of premises reporting that the most recent incident of a crime was believed to have been carried out by an “organised group of criminals.”
22% of reported crimes from this sector were burglaries (including attempts) and it is thought that 40% of these were carried out by ‘organised groups of criminals.’
Anti-social behaviour (ASB)
Vandalism was the most common crime type reported at 34% which is falls under ‘anti-social behaviour.’ Vandalism, malicious damage and petty theft costs many businesses dearly and is often put down to a result of yob culture in Britain.
Continuing with the sector example of agriculture, forestry and fishing, almost three-quarters (72%) of businesses affected by ASB said that this had had a negative impact on their business, with around half (42%) reporting that they had suffered a negative financial impact, a much higher proportion compared with all other sectors surveyed.
1 in 5 businesses are impacted by crime
According to a study carried out by a leading business insurer – RSA, British Businesses Blighted by Yobs – petty theft, vandalism and malicious damage is costing businesses £9.8 billion a year. 1 in 5 businesses are impacted, costing them anything between £20,000 and £66,000 each per annum, dependant on sector and geographic factors.
Some business sectors are more at risk than others
Utilities, engineering, transport, construction and agriculture sectors are most at risk. Regional figures vary, but East Midlands, South East & West Midlands top the list, where petty theft, vandalism and even arson is costing businesses a staggering £155 million a year.
It is not just big businesses that are being blighted by crime
A recent research study by FSA – ‘Calling time on business crime’ suggests that smaller businesses in the UK are particularly vulnerable to crime with 2.54 million small firms in England & Wales experiencing at least one business crime in the previous two years.
Burglary accounts for 42% of crimes reported by firms, with criminal damage at 36%, costing small businesses £3,340 per crime.
When are businesses most at risk?
Vandalism and malicious damage can happen at any time, but according to the British Crime Survey (BCS) 77% of vandalism occurs in the evening and during the night. This report shows that 59% of incidents of anti-social behaviour occur during the week and 41% over the weekend.
Domestic burglary statistics published by the ONS – Overview of Burglary and other Household Theft: England & Wales shows that 70% of domestic burglaries occur during the week with two fifths of those occurring during the evening or night.
However, for most businesses it is not that clear cut – if anything we see more intruder related incidents, whether burglaries or vandalism occurring at the weekend. Evenings and nights remain the most common periods for intruder related crimes and criminal damage incidents within the business security sector.
What can businesses do to reduce their security risks?
RSA’s research concludes by emphasising the importance of preparing for the risks businesses may face by having the right level of protection in place.
It is encouraging that the FSA’s ‘Calling time on business crime’ study demonstrates that 71% of small businesses have taken at least one defensive measure against traditional business crime. 46% of these installed or upgraded physical security, e.g. locks, alarms and CCTV.
Ensuring adequate defensive measures are in place is a crucial consideration for maintaining business security. Burglary and vandalism can be devastating to any business whatever the size, across every sector. Remote business security solutions can provide a crucial and cost-efficient layer of security to your business.
What is remote business security monitoring?
When a business chooses remote monitoring services from Farsight, it can rest assured that qualified & highly trained security professionals are vigilantly keeping watch, keeping your site safe.
With real-time alerts, our security operators, working from the Farsight Observatory, can remotely monitor your site’s CCTV systems when it counts – whether that’s 24/7 around the clock monitoring, during unstaffed periods overnight or at a time that suits specific requirements.
Our professional security operators can remotely monitor your alarm systems and site CCTV, responding to alerts of intruders, fire and/or remote access control systems.
On an alert, our operators will immediately react to confirm the cause of the alarm and identification of any suspicious activity before notifying the site’s preferred contact (a designated keyholder) and the necessary emergency services department.
We offer a full range of remote monitoring services:
Getting the right business security advice is crucial
Farsight provides comprehensive advice on maximising business security, including identifying problem areas, raising awareness to security weaknesses, choosing the right security equipment and suggestions for security camera installation.
We work seamlessly with security equipment installers and businesses to ensure efficient integration of our monitoring services and provide cutting edge technology systems and communication to ensure our clients know premises are being protected.
Below is a selection of detailed guides from our blog to help you get the most out of your business security:
If you would like to discuss your business security measures with Farsight, talk to our experienced team today. Call us on 0845 371 0101 or email us via our online contact form.