Restaurant Security Best Practices

A CCTV camera mounted outside a restaurant with tables in the background.

Restaurant security is an ongoing concern for owners, managers, and employees. From following OSHA regulations and food safety guidelines to keeping customers fed and happy, restaurant owners have a lot to take care of on a day-to-day basis. One top priority restaurateurs must focus on is the safety of their customers, staff, and assets. Restaurants are an appealing target to would-be-criminals because they often keep a lot of cash on-site, and they often contain valuable equipment that can easily be fenced on the black market. Any restaurant can be a target, but restaurants that are open late and serve alcohol are even more vulnerable to violent crime.

In order to protect staff, guests, and property, it’s important to be proactive when it comes to restaurant security. However, there’s a lot of information to sift through and options to choose from, so it can be difficult to ensure you have the right processes and security equipment in place to minimize the risk of damages and losses. There’s no single “right” way to do it; rather, there are many different approaches that can be used to improve security. 

Know When You’re Most Vulnerable

Restaurant crime is often opportunistic; therefore, your greatest chance of being robbed is when you are most vulnerable. After hours is prime time for burglars, as are the times you’re opening or closing your restaurant, when most patrons and staff aren’t around. Teach employees who are tasked with opening or closing to lock doors and stay vigilant for signs of suspicious activities. Consider investing in hardened cash-registers that are difficult to steal from and adding panic alarm buttons to make it easy to signal authorities for help when the alarm has been disabled after arriving.

Install Outside Lighting

Installing lighting that is specifically designed for your restaurant will make it much harder for anyone trying to break into your place to approach and enter undetected. Proper lighting also makes it easier for the police to see what’s going on if they arrive to the scene in time. Be sure to evenly distribute your lighting around your restaurant’s premises and watch out for dark spots.

Install Cameras Inside and Out

Prominent security cameras around your property can ward off potential would-be criminals and can instill a sense of safety in your staff and patrons. Also consider installing security cameras at strategic areas throughout your restaurant’s interior. CCTV recordings can help in the event that a burglar breaks in, and live feeds can allow you to keep your eye on your business from anywhere. Unfortunately, sometimes an employee may decide to try and skim off the top, or a customer may try to pocket valuables or skip out on the check, and a camera can help deter them or catch them in the act.

Protect Your Parking Lot

Be sure not to overlook your parking lot, a criminal can have a field day in an unsecured lot. If any of your staff or patrons accidently leave their car unlocked, there isn’t much stopping a bad actor from raiding it or even stealing it if they’re proficient. However, once again, cameras can help deter would-be thieves or at least catch them on camera. In addition, make sure your parking lots are well-lit, which can help reduce theft and assaults.

Install an Integrated Security System

The best way to secure your restaurant is with an integrated security system that offers comprehensive monitoring and alarm notifications. You can integrate cameras, lights, and and more to make securing your restaurant as easy as possible. To figure out what equipment you need and to ensure your business is properly secured, be sure to consult with local security experts. 3D Security has helped numerous restaurant owners secure their businesses across East Texas for over 30 years, and we’d love to help you next.