As Thefts Increase So Should Your Security
You’d be surprised by the things people will steal. As the economy has steadily worsened during the past 18 months, a corresponding rise in shoplifting and outright thefts has plagued retailers and their distributors. Case in point: Bozzuto’s, a wholesale grocer that supplies 900 East Coast grocery stores.
P. Allen Spriggs, vice president of surveillance and corporate security for Bozzuto’s, has seen an increase in thefts at the dock. “People will open a case of Lunchables, take out one box, open it up, and eat the dessert. Just by doing that they destroyed the value of the case,” says Spriggs. At the other end of the spectrum, whole 50-foot trailers full of goods have disappeared overnight, costing thousands of dollars.
To combat theft — both petty and grand — Spriggs installed video cameras from a few different providers, including Axis Communications. Video surveillance combats thievery, and also ensures quality control by checking that workers follow established procedures when handling customer goods. Video also cuts down on workers’ compensation claims.
Bozzuto’s has been using video surveillance for 13 years, but recently Spriggs made the switch from analog cameras to IP cameras that can share data on the company’s information network, allowing easier collaboration and storage on DVDs.
“I have security staff looking at the cameras in real time. We can also review if we have a question about something,” he says. Spriggs retrofitted many of the company’s analog video cameras with encoders, which lets them generate digital content. But when he adds new cameras, they are always IP-based, like the Axis 215 PTZ (pan-tilt-zoom) Network Camera from Axis Communications.
“The prices have come down tremendously, and the return on investment is huge,” says Spriggs. “The resolution is much better compared with analog video, and you can control smaller items or detailed items much better.” Spriggs says these cameras will pick up everything from the pilfering of a candy bar to the theft of an entire trailer of goods.
Eyes in the Sky
The Axis 215 PTZ strikes the right balance of features versus affordability for business users. The position of this PTZ camera can be easily controlled by a remote operator to cover all angles. Users can control the camera by joystick from a remote location — even via a cell phone.
The 215 PTZ is perfect for the indoor surveillance of shops, reception areas, schools, offices and other places that require both overview and zoom capability. Another benefit is that extra cabling is not needed to install the camera and share data over the network, providing flexibility in installation.
“We have eliminated our problems with theft and cut down on the number of guards. IP security cameras have been very cost effective.”
— Glen Hotinksi, director of operations, Paragon Honda Auto Group, Woodside, N.Y.
“IP cameras replace guards, creating a virtual fence around a location like an outdoor car lot.”
— Juda Slomovich, co-founder and chief operating officer, Visentry, Paramus, N.J.
“IP video solutions allow you to take advantage of today’s megapixel camera technology, which provides much better video resolution.”
— Christy Cook, senior account manager, TFE Connect, Hewitt, Texas
By the Numbers
15%: The 2009 global growth rate of IP cameras. Defying the downward pull of recessionary forces, demand for IP video surveillance equipment in the Americas is fueling the growth.
SOURCE: IMS Research
$41 billion: The estimated video surveillance market in 2014
SOURCE: ABI Research
$15.5 billion: The amount of U.S. retail employee theft in 2008. Employees were responsible for 43% of stores’ unexplained losses, versus 36% ($12.9 billion) for shoplifters
SOURCE: The 2008 National Retail Security Survey, University of Florida
What do you consider the most important part of a physical security solution?
49% Access and perimeter controls
36% Physical and environmental security
11% IP cameras
4% Other types of video surveillance systems
SOURCE: CDW poll of 452 BizTech readers