In the UK, retail crime and shoplifting are on the rise at an exponential rate that is costings the taxpayer.  A report in February 2017 by the British Retail Consortium stated that the cost of retail crime to the UK is well over £600 million. Over the past 10 years that’s an increase of 240%.  Criminals are implementing more targeted and sophisticated ways to target shops not just on the high street but also online. Cyber crime accrues to around 15% of retail crime annually.  Although retail crime has fallen, these methods are making it more difficult for authorities to stop these advanced methods of crime in the retail sector.

Protecting your retail business from shoplifters and other organised crime groups should be top your agenda, especially at busy times like Christmas.

Be Vigilant

Make sure you put service on with a smile. Make sure you’re vigilant and are aware of people entering your shop.  Make sure staff can spot a shoplifter. By approaching all customers with a smile and a helpful attitude, it can usually spook a would-be thief. Make potential suspects know of your presence by asking if they need any help.


To increase visibility, keep shorter displays near to the tills and taller ones nearer to the perimeter. Don’t create hideaways and blind spots.  For genuine customers, create a layout that’s good for buyers as well as making it easy for staff to tackle potential thieves.


Criminals will be deterred if you have cameras inside and outside your premises. With technology ever evolving, monitoring your store operations is easier than ever, from home, from the till or from the store office. For small businesses, CCTV can be especially helpful if you only have a couple of staff members.


What about after hours, when you aren’t in store?  Protecting your shop at night or over the holiday season during Christmas and New Year should be on your list. Using exterior protection such as shutters or grills as well as an alarm system should be implemented.  They can protect shop fronts superbly.

Use Secure Doors

If the back of your retail store isn’t properly protected it can be a way for criminals to gain entry. Steel security doors can be adopted to make it harder for potential perpetrators.

By adopting these tips, your retail shop can stop crime in its tracks. Stay up to date on the Security Scotland blog for more news from the industry.