In the cyber security age, has physical security become an after thought?


With high-profile cyber attacks, government and corporate espionage, and the recent malware attack on 200 countries taking centre-stage in people’s collective subconscious over the past few weeks, it’s easy to forget the broad range of other vulnerabilities businesses face.

Cyber attacks are finally getting the attention they deserve. After years of neglect, businesses and government institutions are proactively seeking out cyber security solutions against malware, email phishing scams, and data loss.

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After brazen attacks like WannaCry, the sense of vulnerability pervading the corporate world is justified. Technology, as always, is filling the gap and offering security online. However, businesses need to leverage these tools to secure their offline operations as well. Here’s what you need to know about securing your business with the latest tools:


Shoplifting and burglary are all too common in the retail industry. There were nearly two million burglaries in the US in 2013 alone. There were 407,000 commercial burglary cases which cost businesses $2,500 on average.

In 2014, shoplifting and fraud cost American businesses nearly $44 billion in aggregate. The survey conducted by National Trade Federation (NRF) and the University of Florida concluded that losses from shoplifting, theft and fraud were often so deep that small businesses would struggle to absorb it all and stay afloat. Perhaps more worryingly, the vast majority of these robberies involved forcible entry.

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Nearly 60% of burglaries involved someone breaking and entering into the business premises. Often these robberies occur when the business is shut. The risk of intrusion is particularly high on bank holidays and weekends. Shoplifters reported picking locks, breaking doors or climbing through open windows to get into shops and offices.

Human error

Another common cause for shrinkage and losses is human error. Lack of proper software or inventory management systems led to miscalculations and avoidable losses in inventory. Over the years these minor mistakes can stack up and cost the business a fair amount of revenue.

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The solution

Better technology and sophisticated systems are often the best solution for these real-world problems. An integrated surveillance and alarm system is known to be particularly effective in deterring burglars. Smart locks, motion sensors, inventory trackers and better POS systems can help protect your business against theft, fraud, and the occasional human error.

Not only does a smart security system save you money it also helps you protect your clients and staff from harm.


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Nick Ismail

Nick Ismail is a former editor for Information Age (from 2018 to 2022) before moving on to become Global Head of Brand Journalism at HCLTech. He has a particular interest in smart technologies, AI and...