According to the US Department of Justice, there are over 2 and a half million break-ins each year, and small businesses are the target of one-third of these break-ins. Thieves love targeting small and mid-size businesses of all kinds for a variety of reasons. Even if a business doesn’t keep much cash on site, most businesses usually have plenty of electronics and other assets that are ripe for the taking.
If your business winds up being burgled, there’s several steps you need to take. The sooner you act, the better off you’ll be.
Contact the Police
The first thing you’ll need to do is contact the police to alert them of the break-in. If you don’t have security cameras monitoring your premises and the police aren’t able to get prints or any other useful leads, they may not have a great chance of finding and apprehending the culprit, but it’s still important to report the crime as quickly as possible to help increase the chances. Regardless, you’ll need the police to create a report so you can provide it to your insurance company.
Take Pictures & Videos
Record proof of damages to include with your insurance claim. If the thieves destroyed your door or window(s) getting in, be sure to record that. Take pictures of any broken items that were left laying around, and take pictures of areas where items were taken from. Be as thorough as possible.
Take Inventory of Missing Items
Thoroughly look around to see what items were taken so you can report them to your insurance company. Record as much information as possible about the missing items, including the brand and model of each missing item (when applicable), the approximate value of each item, and when and where each item was purchased. If you have receipts, it’s a good idea to gather them together so you can submit them to your insurance company with your claim.
File a Claim
After you have your police report, pictures of damage, and details about the items stolen, you’ll need to file a claim with your insurance company. Your insurance adjuster will work with you to get the information needed to process your claim and figure out what all is covered, how much is covered and let you know of limits, deductibles, etc. relevant to your policy. In addition to the information you put together while taking an inventory of missing items, your adjuster may request additional information such as bank or credit card statements to help verify the value of the stolen items, and other relevant information such as serial numbers when applicable.
Take Steps to Protect Your Business Going Forward
Hopefully your insurance company is cooperative and helps you recover the value of the stolen goods. However, the damage caused by a burglar may be severe enough to require you to close your business until repairs can be made and everything can be cleaned up.
The best way to avoid the headaches that come with a business break-in is to take steps to properly secure your premises and create deterrents to help keep bad actors away. One way to do this is to have security lights installed around your property. Most criminals prefer working under the cover of shadows, so having bright lights illuminating your business can make it a much less attractive target.
Another way to deter criminals is to have security cameras placed prominently around the exterior of your building and property. Criminals who know they’re being recorded are much more likely to think twice about breaking and entering.
Of course, some thieves won’t be deterred by lights and cameras, so it’s crucial to have a solid security system in place. An intruder alarm can be very effective in scaring away a burglar before they have time to steal much or cause much damage, and a reliable system can alert you and the authorities to a breach so that quick action can be taken.
If you need a commercial security system to protect your business in East Texas, contact 3D Security today to discuss your security goals and needs. With over 30 years of experience installing and integrating security systems for businesses of all types and sizes, we can work with you to create the perfect security solution for you to ensure your business is properly protected and secured.