How can I keep my business safe while I’m away?

With COVID-19 seeing a huge increase in the number of businesses working from home, many empty businesses are now being targeted for break-ins. It’s estimated that around 56% of the non-self-employed workforce can work from home, and if you have a job that you don’t need to leave the house for, your business may be at risk. 

Most of us would like to think that we have the security in place to keep our businesses safe overnight – but what about over extended periods of time? Criminals have longer to suss out their means of breaking into an empty property, perhaps even visit it on multiple occasions to establish a plan. If your business isn’t adequately protected, it may be considered an easy target while it lies empty. 

Here are 5 security tips to keep your business safe while you’re away, whether because of COVID-19, the holidays, or anything else:

  1. Remove all stock (if you can)

If you’re a retail business, or you store or hold stock for any reason, clear it out. Thieves will take one look through your windows and move on when they see that your shop floor is empty. If it gives you greater peace of mind, stick a sign up on your windows advertising the fact that your property is currently empty. 

2. Remove your electronics

Some of the most expensive items in your business are your electronics. In many cases, these are also the easiest to steal. If you haven’t already, it’s worth figuring out a plan for securing your electronics while you’re away, whether by locking them in a large safe or high-security cupboard, chaining them up, or removing them altogether. 

3. Keep your business lit up

A business that is lit up is far less of an appealing target to a burglar than one that is dark, quiet and empty. Not only does a lit up business suggest there may be activity inside, it also prevents a burglar from having darkened surroundings to blend into, making them less likely to be seen by a member of the public. 

4. Use multiple locking systems

Unfortunately, having a front door with a single lock is unlikely to provide the security your business needs. If you want to protect your valuables, having a gate, two front locking doors and locks on your windows will give you the best chance of doing so. Find a locksmith with a key making machine and make sure that only you and other trusted members of staff have access to these keys for your new locks. 

5. Make sure you lock up

On a similar note, there’s no point in having additional locking systems if you forget to lock up when you leave. If you pop by your business to check everything’s in order during your time away, make sure you’re vigilant with checking that doors, windows, safes and gates are all securely locked before you leave. Don’t make the job easier for a potential burglar!

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