Security tips for small businesses in South Africa

Find out how you can improve the security at your shop or office in South Africa.

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Securing your small business

Prevention is better than cure, the saying goes. Even though insurers offer excellent products that financially protect your small business premises from crime, this article describes ways to prevent such insurance claims.

As a small business owner, it could sometimes be easier said than done if you have a small budget for security measures.

We had a chat with Jonathan, a small business owner, and how he secures his small business for tips.

Read what Jonathan said about securing his small business.

Do you have any security tips for small businesses??

"Sure, thing. It all depends on your budget and where your business is situated. Security is a hobby of mine, which grew out of necessity.

  • "Always be vigilant - always double-check if you have locked your door and closed your gate when needed.

  • "Never leave any stranger or would-be client unattended in your shop, even if it is for a minute. For example, they could quickly steal your cell phone behind your shop counter.

  • "Set up some solar-powered spotlights outside your building. They are quite affordable, at about R300 each from an online store. They also always work regardless of loadshedding and don't add to your electricity bill.

  • "You can also boost security outside your business with electric fencing if you can afford it. Or start with metal spikes to make it harder for criminals to climb over your wall.

  • "Don't leave valuables lying around. Keep valuables and money locked away and to a minimum on the premises.

  • "Sign up for a local armed response-type security. Don't just join any security service. Talk to your neighbours, friends and family about which company is the best and most affordable. As a minimum, have a phone number you can call for help. Then, save up for an alarm system, then an outdoor sensor.

  • "Connect with your local community. Is there a neighbourhood watch type of community service in your area? Talk to them for cost-effective advice and join their WhatsApp group to know what's going on in your area.

  • "Save money by asking friends and family to help you install security equipment like solar spotlights. Why not return the favour and help them as well?

  • "A good security gate protecting your entrance is a helpful security barrier to keep criminals out.

  • "Security cameras are great too. When I last checked, you can pick up a cheap camera and everything else you need at your local DIY type shop for about R1000. You could even start with an even more affordable fake camera that people see is there but make sure that it is set up realistically.

  • "Save up for a good battery backup system for your alarm system and camera for loadshedding.

  • "Do your research to get the best value for money and avoid buying rubbish security products.

  • "Carry pepper spray as a last line of defence, but nothing is worth your life if it comes down to your shop's valuables or your life. Please look after yourself, your staff and customers as your top priority."

Jonathan gave us lots of helpful security tips. Are you looking for more info? Then read on now.

Learn more about security for small businesses

If you want to protect your small business premises from criminals, you need to think like an intruder. How could he get into your premises? What time of the day is best? So, he first needs information.

How would a criminal collect information?

He could pretend to be a client, and while entering the premises, he will notice any open windows and any information about the alarm system. Chatting to some unhappy employees could provide more insight.

How to make your premises the least attractive to criminals

Generally, criminals like to go undetected. So, they like to work in the dark, so arrange for great lighting inside and outside your building. Place powerful lights at all entrances to your facility.

Ensure that people on the outside can see anyone moving inside your office. Install iron bars properly welded into position over windows and skylights.

Securing the outside of your building

Remove or cut back any shrubbery or branches that could provide a hiding place and obscure the view from the windows.

Install outside doors made of solid wood or metal, with metal frames and deadbolt locks. Electrical fencing connected to the building’s alarm system is a great deterrent, but you should test these systems now and then.

How to reduce the risk of theft from your premises

There is no guarantee that criminals can't get into your office. But what you can do is reduce the risk as much as possible by leaving virtually nothing on the inside that they could steal.

Before leaving the office, walk around and see if you can store away any valuable items lying around. Keep valuable records and cash in a good drop safe and not a cheap one.

Advertise on your doors and windows that you are using a drop safe.

What about cameras?

criminal In addition, putting up signs outside saying that the premises are under surveillance could deter criminals.

Some other preventative measures

Perhaps you could join forces with some other nearby shops and share a night guard.

Starting a small business from home, you could also have an excellent guard dog.

It doesn’t have to be powerful, but it must just make a noise. Dogs can hear and smell an intruder miles away, beating any electronic detecting system. That’s why criminals don’t like dogs.

Grow your small business with Yoco

230 000 small businesses trust Yoo to get paid. Why not join them?

Take a look at our affordable mobile card machines with no monthly payments and free tools to help you run your business like the Yoco App.

Please get in touch if you have any questions.

Don't let crime get you down. You can make your business a great success story.

Source: How can I protect my business from burglary?

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