Earlier this year, The British Retail Consortium’s (BRC) annual Retail Crime Survey highlighted a worrying trend regarding the financial burden of crime on retailers in the UK.
The total direct financial cost of crime for retailers has increased to a staggering £900 million, up 28% on last year’s figure.
Retailers have experienced a growth of almost 40% in overall incidents, mostly driven by ‘Customer Theft’ which represents almost 99% of all incidents. ‘Customer Theft’ now costs retailers over half a billion pounds per year, which equates to a 33% increase on last year’s findings (BRC, 2019).
The biggest concern for retailers and their employees relates to the growth in severe violent incidents against staff. BRC members state that career criminals will intentionally use violence and abuse when confronted over stealing, often with an increasing willingness to brandish weapons to further threaten the safety of staff. This worrying trend, coupled with the increasingly common requirement for retail colleagues to age-check and refuse sales, triggers more violence and threats.
Using Body Worn Cameras To Combat Retail Crime
One of the most effective ways to actively deter violent and aggressive behaviour, and protect customer-facing staff, is to equip staff with Body Worn Incident Recorders, such as Edesix's VideoTag VT-100.
Fixed IP Cameras and CCTV are a staple of retail security and are used by independent stores and supermarkets alike.
The Edesix VideoTag VT-100 integrates into leading, ONVIF compliant, Video Management Systems (VMS), for live streaming to security control centres and enhancing Fixed IP Camera coverage in retail environments. Furthermore, the small footprint of the VT-100 means that it is able to provide retail staff with reassurance in their workplace safety, without hindering their day-to-day activities.
Not only do the cameras benefit retailers by capturing evidential footage of incidents that lead to faster conviction rates, simply wearing the cameras has been proven to deter aggressive behaviour towards staff, de-escalating the situation before any violence occurs.
RFID TouchAssign technology enables VideoTag Incident Recorders to be seamlessly implemented into an enterprise workflow regime. Footage captured by a VideoTag can also be used in training for customer service staff when dealing with abusive customers, and establishing best practice techniques for retailers.
With violence against retail staff members increasing every year, the Edesix VideoTag offers a simple, cost-effective solution that protects staff while capturing court-ready evidence.
The Edesix VideoTag VT-100
The VideoTag VT-100 Incident Recorder is one of the latest in Body Worn Camera solutions from Edesix. Designed to complement your overarching security function, this light-weight, unobtrusive and easy to use body camera can be worn by staff on their uniform, ready to record at a moment’s notice. The VT-100 weighs just 72g, yet has many of the capabilities expected of an Edesix Body Worn Camera.
Intended for less frequent use than our VideoBadge range of Body Worn Cameras, the VT-100 requires minimal attention from staff and has the ability to operate on standby mode for up to six months. In addition to this, the VT-100 can automatically offload or stream footage when an incident is recorded within the confines of a secure network via Wi-Fi.
Alongside the VT-100 in the VideoTag series is the VideoTag VT-50 Incident Recorder. The VT-50 is equally capable of complementing your security function as its low-maintenance operation and three-month long standby battery means that staff don’t need to worry about charging the device often, allowing them to focus on their work safe in the knowledge that they can trigger the device instantly, if needed.
If the safety of your retail staff is a concern and you are considering a Body Worn Camera deployment to reduce the cost of crime, email the Edesix sales team firstname.lastname@example.org.