Valkyrie Security advice to protect your business premises during the COVID-19 lockdown
As many businesses continue to adapt to working remotely, hundreds of thousands of commercial properties are being left vacant (factories, offices, bars/restaurants, sports and leisure venues). This has led to a warning from the Government and the Police to ensure that all properties are appropriately secured. On average, 18% of business premises across the UK fall victim to crime – this is under “normal circumstances” – as you can imagine, during this lockdown period, police forces are anticipating this to rise. So, now more than ever, it is imperative that you ensure your security measures are up to date and effective in deterring and preventing theft, damage or harm.
In this period of uncertainty, it can be difficult to distinguish exactly what is needed for your business to ensure you return to a safe environment to work in. Using recommended police advice, we cover 12 important security tips to help you mitigate the security risks for sites and business premises where staff are now working remotely.
- Maintain your physical security procedures/protocols at all times: Although there is a distinct lack of people on the streets, criminals are still on the lookout for lapses in people’s security in order to take advantage. In fact, it’s at times like this we are at our most vulnerable and a reminder to continue the basics of security is important. Make sure you know who has access and keys to the office – are they storing the keys in a secure place.
- Consider changing the access control privileges: Access control systems allow you to revoke access and allow different access levels to different staff members (deactivate access fobs), allowing only staff who are required to attend your business premises to have access. This can immediately reduce any potential theft risks.
- A CCTV system can be a major deterrent against crime: CCTV cameras are a highly effective way of deterring theft, especially cameras that are capable of remote viewing or motion detecting. CCTV is associated with significant reductions in both vehicle crime and property crime in general, making it a quick and easy solution to avoiding theft and damage.
- Human Guards (Mobile Patrol Units): Larger businesses like manufacturing companies and warehouses need manpower to complement their digital security measures, especially in times like this where a lot of premises are left unattended. To ensure complete site security, consider security guards to patrol your premises, control access, monitor your security systems, and to deter, detect and delay any breaches in security.
- Use a safe to protect valuables: Valuables, including computers should be removed and taken home and high-value goods on display should be locked up out of sight. A commercial safe is excellent for storing any valuable documentation or items that need to be left in the office. Always choose a high grade safe that your insurance company approves.
- Thermal heat detection cameras can safeguard employees: Thermal imaging cameras are being considered by companies as a return-to-work strategy or a way to maintain productivity for critical personal. Thermal heat detection cameras can effectively scan and recognise faces, automatically detecting their temperature and creating an alert. This is particularly useful for warehouses and shop floors, where there are many workers who may still be coming in despite poor health. Ensuring you are aware of your staff’s health can help minimise the risk to other staff members being exposed to any potential virus.
- Motion sensor lights: Motion sensor lighting helps prevent burglaries and vandalism by making the intruder visible and startling them. If you have outside lights at your premises, ensure they are working, on all night or are motion sensor lights.
- Build up layers of security: Physical security layers afford businesses the ability to deter, detect, delay, deny and defend at every layer of your commercial building, from locking any internal doors to securing valuable goods.
- Ensure deliveries are not being left unattended: A build-up of letters and deliveries are an obvious sign that our commercial premises are unoccupied. Track any deliveries so that you can collect them at the right time.
- Complete an inventory stock check: Make sure all company assets and equipment are clearly marked with your company details. Contact your insurance company for specific steps on the requirements to insure any high value items.
- Carry out a physical security check: Complete a thorough physical check that all doors and windows are locked, your CCTV is working, the alarm is set and that any other security measures you would normally take are operating correctly.
- Don’t make it easy for criminals: Remove any items or waste that could be used to force entry. Make sure you clear any waste stored outside your premises that could be used to cause damage or force entry.
In addition – Visit your office at least once a week, assuming you can maintain social distancing rules
Check the following:
- All electronic equipment is switched off (make sure fridges are empty, off and with doors open)
- Make sure any lap-tops and other portable devices are locked away
- Ensure any hard copies of personnel details are securely stored
- Remove all cash from the office
- If your office is on the ground floor, make sure all windows are kept closed
- Make sure all fire exits are kept clear (operating correctly), even though the building is empty these need to be kept clear to keep in with fire regulations.
- Walk test the sensors for the alarm and CCTV systems.
- If procedures are set up change the password with the security control room on a monthly basis
- Check your perimeter fencing to make sure it is secure and make sure any entrance/exit gates are kept padlocked (except fire exits)
The current and ongoing situation is already proving to be a difficult time for businesses. Issues that may arise due to a security breach could further impact your business, so prevention is always better than cure. Very often security breaches could have been prevented IF stronger measures been implemented and basic procedures followed. By following these tips, you can have peace of mind knowing that you have done everything possible to strengthen your business security measures and protect your staff and premises.
For more information or assistance on how we can help secure your business contact Valkyrie
Email firstname.lastname@example.org | Phone +44 (0) 20 7499 9323