Smartphones are one of the most attractive targets for thieves. Consumer Reports believes that there are over 3 million smartphones stolen every single year. Their very nature makes them attractive to those prone to thievery because they are small, easily concealable, carry a ton of valuable information on them and they’re shockingly easy to jailbreak or fence. As a retailer of mobile devices, however, these little beauties are literally your stock in trade, so it’s vital to put the right systems and practices in place to minimize smartphone theft in your business. Here are some best practices for maintaining loss prevention when it comes to smartphones and other mobile devices in your place of business.

  1. Eyes in the sky. Security cameras have long been one of the most effective prevention techniques for stopping the theft of smartphones and other mobile devices. Not only do sophisticated video cameras record an incident of theft and provide evidence for law enforcement authorities but they also serve as a deterrent by letting potential thieves know that they are being watched. But did you know that you can do significantly more with video cameras than simply record video? By integrating an intelligent video surveillance system with a sophisticated video analytics package, you can analyze the movements of customers (and potential thieves) throughout your store.
  2. Monitor suspicious transactions. In times of economic hardship like the ones America has experienced in the past few years, employee theft unfortunately becomes a harsh fact of life. But by integrating video surveillance with video analytics, you can flag suspicious transactions every time they happen, helping you to pinpoint which sales employees might be using friends or family to scam your store’s retail system. By watching every point-of-sale transaction, video surveillance can provide a valuable tool for theft prevention.
  3. Monitor and staff appropriately. One of the biggest attractions for employee theft is the discovery of a partner-in-crime. Collusion makes foolish, sometimes low-paid employees think they’re smarter than they really are. By monitoring where your employees are assigned and determining which employees work together regularly, you may inadvertently discover that two of your employees are taking home more than just their paychecks.
  4. Track inventory from delivery to point-of-sale. This is standard practice for most major wireless retailers. The easiest way to prevent a smartphone from being stolen is to know precisely where it is from the time that your supplier delivers it to your retail operation to the point that it leaves the store in the hands of a valued and legitimate customer. By using strict inventory control systems and video surveillance to track the movement of inventory throughout the store, you should have a much better handle on which items are coming in and out of your retail operation.
  5. Stay ahead of new technologies. The technology involved in loss prevention is constantly changing. From high-resolution video surveillance employing facial recognition technologies to radio-frequency identification chips, employing the latest technologies will help you prevent smartphone theft, track your inventory more accurately, and hopefully increase the profits generated by your retail operation.