Incidents of burglaries and break-ins for commercial properties in Essex, including rental properties such as houses and flats, have remained fairly constant. Whether your business is located in Billericay, Romford or Loughton, it pays to have a good plan for personal security.
At Lockout247, we’ve worked with a wide range of different customers over the years and we’re always here to help if you have a problem with your locks.
Here’s our quick take on boosting security for businesses of all types.
Types of Commercial Burglary
Essex is no different from any other county and businesses can become targets whether they are on the high street or somewhere like an industrial estate. In most domestic burglaries, the offender spots their chance (an open window or low-quality door lock) while in commercial cases there is more often a reason and some planning that goes into things.
Commercial burglaries range from simple smash-and-grabs and opportunistic robberies to more sophisticated ones.
The impact on businesses can be considerable, of course. There is a financial loss but there can also be substantial property damage and lost operating time because the business has to be put on hold while things are repaired or investigations are carried out by the police. You could also lose staff, especially if they have been psychologically affected by the burglary and don’t want to work for you anymore because they don’t feel safe.
The Risky Behaviours that Make You a Potential Victim
There are around 6,000 small and medium size businesses in Essex alone and more than we think operate from what we would call unsecured premises. Just because you don’t believe you have items of value on site, doesn’t mean a burglar will think the same.
For instance, an office that has laptops and desktop computers or other technical equipment may well be a good target if there is easy access.
1. Open Access Workplaces
The businesses most at risk from burglaries, especially spur-of-the-moment violations, are those that have an open-door policy. If you’re a retail store on the high street, this is something you can’t avoid which is why most places employ a security guard and have good CCTV. If you’re an office, having an open door where anyone can walk in makes it much more likely that someone will see you as an opportunity to make some easy cash.
Having a keypad entry or buzzer system is a much safer option – your doors and their locking mechanism are a first line of defence and are designed to not only protect your assets but keep your employees and you safe as well.
Another issue with offices and other workplaces is lighting. This might not seem an obvious thing but burglars much prefer the dark to operate in. With the ongoing cost of living crisis and many businesses tightening their belts, some have opted to turn off the lighting when their premises are not in use. While this does save money, it can make you a more attractive option to a burglar.
At the very least, make sure that main entry points and exits as well as parking areas are reasonably well-lit and covered by CCTV. That can act as a big deterrent.
3. Valuables on Show
If a burglar can see what they are likely to gain from breaking in it can make them more brazen. The risk is worth taking. A good example would be having cash lying around or jewellery left on display when you close up for the night. Let’s say you’re a new startup and you’ve got the latest iMacs and other digital equipment on display in your office window. For some burglars that can be irresistible.
If you have valuables (and most businesses do), then it’s important to put them away when you close for the day, whether that’s in a store room with a good lock or a specially made safe.
4. Poor Security
One of the key reasons a burglar will target a particular commercial property is that they are confident the security system is not the best in the world. Like most criminals, they want an easy win and anything that makes them think twice is likely to be a good option if you want to protect your business.
Our Top Tips
- It’s important to review your locks and surrounding security regularly and make sure that it is fit for purpose and in good working order.
- Investing in high-quality doors and locking mechanisms is the first place you should start – it’s always better to pay a little more and get excellent an system that helps keep your property protected. At the very least, investing in good security should dramatically reduce your insurance premiums.
- Burglar alarms and CCTV are other common ways to keep burglars at bay and make them think twice about targeting your property. The more visible you can make this the better.
- It’s also important to make your staff aware of the key aspects of security on your premises so that they know what to do, how to lock up properly and how to recognise if there is a problem.
Commercial Locksmith Services
One commercial area that we’ve worked with a lot over the past few years is the letting industry. Whether it’s broken locks or the need to gain entry to a property, partnering with a professional team of lock specialists is essential.
We offer a wide range of different affordable lock repairs and other services for businesses of all types. At lockout247.com, we’ve built partnerships across the commercial spectrum and many business owners have our number on speed dial.
With fast response times and a no-nonsense approach to any lock problem, we’ll make sure that your property is made secure quickly and at a competitive price. If you’re an estate or property manager in the area, we can help provide support for your entire portfolio across all areas of Essex. We can also furnish you with a free, no-obligation quote for any work that you need to carry out.