Licensees should be vigilant about crime prevention in the lead-up to Christmas.
Many licensees will already have safe, alarms, CCTV and an array of other security measures in place, but still face the risk of a potential incident. Typically during the festive season pubs have more cash and products on the premises, making them an attractive target to criminals.
Tips to minimise your exposure
Good customer service
Criminals do not like to be acknowledged by staff when going on a reconnaissance mission, maintain interaction and regular patrols around the premises, including toilets. It can help to deter crime, and also increase footfall and service to legitimate customers.
Set limits for tills
Skimming the tills regularly is good practice. Reducing the amount of cash in the till also means offenders are less likely to return.
Arrange for any AWP, ATM or vending machines to be emptied regularly so they do not become targets.
Check your CCTV and security equipment
Check equipment daily and ensure CCTV are of evidential quality, all dates and times are correct and there are sufficient supplies of recording media.
Review banking procedures
Bank more frequently, and ensure any cash in transit collections or deposits don’t get carried out at the same time and day each week. Check your insurance policy, as you may need to be accompanied by another able-bodied adult if you are banking over a specified amount.
Keep the book up to date to record details of any suspicious incidents, people or vehicles as well as ensuring any incidents are documented no matter how trivial.
Review your cashing up procedure
Ensure all external doors are locked, even for the removal of rubbish or staff exits, where applicable check any panic alarms are operating and connected to your alarm receiving company.
Assess opening and closing procedures
Where possible, a minimum of two people should be at the opening and closing of the premises.
After many incidents it is discovered that staff have failed to comply with security procedures. Make sure these procedures are part of their daily workload, and that wherever possible references are obtained for any new or temporary staff prior to employment.
Arrange regular briefings with security staff as they play an integral role in carrying out building checks, toilet checks and vetting customers as they enter the premises.
Intruder alarms / panic buttons
Ensure all systems are fully working, possibly by an agreed test with the alarm company. Ensure they have an up to date list of key holders and emergency contact numbers.
Contractors / Visitors
Ensure that any contractors or visitors to your premises are expected and planned. No one should be premitted in staff areas unless they are authorised and relevant ID has been check and verified.