Deterring Flash Robs and Retail Theft with Access Control

This year’s NRF event covered a tremendous amount of ground educating retailers on a wide variety of subjects. An article that appeared in the show daily on NRF’s Guidelines on Flash Robs was definitely a worthy read. Flash Robs are an emerging phenomenon in which teens and children, some as young as 11, take part in gathering as an organized mob that has been triggered via social media for the sole purposes of robbing a retailer enmasse.

Retail crime is on the rise from flash robs to straight out shoplifting. According to a recent article in The Guardian, the overall cost of retail crime in the UK has soared by 15.6% in a year to £1.6bn as the sector is targeted by serious, organised criminals. The British Retail Consortium’s Retail Crime Survey 2012 found that nearly one in 20 stores was robbed during this past year. The average cost of each incident tripled to £3,005, from £989 the previous year, a result of more organised offending. The survey indicates there are 2m incidents of shoplifting a year in the UK retail sector as a whole, involving about £200m worth of goods. The average value of goods stolen rose by 28%, to £109. Systematic targeting of higher value goods by organised criminals is the primary cause for the increased cost of retail crime. 

In this news interview of flash rob victim Luke Cho, Mildblend Supply Co. store owner, you can tell he senses something is out of place when he sees streams of teenagers flood through his store doors. His gut tells him to lock the store to prevent more members of a flash mob from entering and preventing the ones in the store from leaving with $3000 worth of jeans.  For a while, this idea seems to thwart the offenders until they figure out how to open the door and make their getaway.

Leveraging this same concept, Tensator access gates provide an excellent way to help prevent and deter flash robs by making it easy to enter a store but difficult to leave with an unpurchased item.  The automatic gates clearly indicate where the store entry is – and there is only one way to enter the store; customers cannot exit back through the entrance gates as an alarm is triggered notifying sales/security staff.  Instead, customers have to follow the flow around the store to the exit which is after the checkout/point of purchase area. Tensator offers different models and customized styles of access gates to meet your store look and feel.  Access gates are an affordable investment that by their presence alone make criminals think twice about an easy getaway – and more importantly help ensure the safety of your employees, customers and merchandise.

 To learn more, visit access gates.