The first documented report of shoplifting was in London, sometime in the 16th century. The people responsible for these acts at the time, were called "Lifters" Today, this problem has increased and is causing retailers throughout the United States, $13 billion in losses. According to the National Association for Shoplifting Prevention (NASP), that is equivalent to $35 million a DAY in losses or what retailers call "shrink".
There are numerous tools that can be used to deter shoplifters such as good customer service, noticeable employees in uniform and name tags as well as a neat and orderly location. In addition, a security guard at the entrance/exit area of the location, CCTV, and an EAS system could assist as well. However, even with all of these tools, shoplifting continues to plague retailers throughout the country. Below are some statistics that were provided by the NASP and I am sure you will agree, are quite alarming.
There is a tool that can not only deter shoplifting within your business but also assist you with recovering the merchandise if there is a theft and even possibly allow you to recover restitution from the perpetrator (Civil Demand). Store detectives can blend within your shopping environment and are trained to observe the five elements of proof that are needed in order to successfully apprehend a shoplifter. Notice, I did not state "suspected' shoplifter because a well trained store detective will not make a stop unless all elements of proof are present. The elements, which are listed below; guarantee that a productive stop will be made.
The store detective must:
1. Observe the subject enter the store and/or the department
2. Observe the subject select merchandise that has been verified as store property
3. Observe the subject conceal the said merchandise
4. Maintain constant and uninterrupted surveillance on the subject
5. Apprehend the subject after he or she passes ALL points of payment
Some retailers have their own Loss Prevention or Asset Protection officers, yet other retailers may not have the budget for such a department. Our store detectives that are apart of our Shoplifting Response Team are fully trained on the aforementioned elements and have years of experience detecting, apprehending and processing shoplifters. They are the perfect solution for the retailer that has a shoplifting issue but can not justify creating a department and supplying store detectives at every location. To learn more about our investigative techniques, please click here.
“Information and statistics provided by the National Association for Shoplifting Prevention(NASP) a nonprofit organization providing research-based shoplifting prevention initiatives including education, prevention, justice and rehabilitation programs. Contact NASP: Click here to email us