Business may be booming in Oxford but so too is the crime rate. In June 2015, 509 crimes were reported in the Oxford Central Neighbourhood. This may be lower than a place like London, but it is much higher than in other cities in the UK. The fact is, Oxford is not the safest place to own a business. When a place is popular, it attracts criminals as well as ordinary everyday people wanting to take advantage of the amenities and facilities in a popular town. In order to prevent these criminals striking your Oxford business, follow these crucial steps for your own security.
- Identify Your Security Issues
A shop or small business in Oxford may not have issues with, for example, hostage takers or terrorists but you will have issues with shoplifting and anti-social behaviour, for example. Before you decide on what security measures to take at your company you should first consider the specific risks that affect you, and plan to combat them.
- Move with the Changes
Once you have identified issues, don’t think that these will stay the same over time. Oxford is a vibrant, fast-growing city and the crime pattern will alter over time. Be aware that you will need to keep looking at crime risk and identifying problem areas as your business grows and the city changes.
- Provide Visual Deterrents
The correct locks and bolts are essential, but you also need to advertise to would-be criminals that your building or premises is protected. Security guards act as a visual deterrent as well as being able to alert police early on if anything is happening at the property. A thief that sees a security guard looking after a shop or factory is more likely to move onto an easier target.
- Don’t Try to Do it Yourself
The security guards are highly trained, professional, and experienced. Unless you personally have this level of experience in yourself or your staff, it is not a good idea to try to solve your security needs yourself. The crime risk is constantly changing, and you are probably not up to date on the many ways in which a business can be targeted. You also put yourself in danger if you try to take on criminals yourself.
- Provide Consistent, Effective Measures
Any security measures you put in place, and any security procedures, must be consistent and provided on a regular basis. It’s not a good idea to have alarms that are only switched on when you remember, for example, or a guard that patrols one area of the factory only. Once you have worked out a strategic routine with a security firm then it is best if this is implemented 24 hours a day, 365 days in the year. Oxford criminals do not take days off, so your security systems should be up and running all year round.