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For a comprehensive guide on Robbery and how to prevent it, we recommend that you read:  Advice on Robbery [473KB]

Silhouette of a person in a cell black and whiteKeep windows clean and clear: Remove posters and advertising from windows. Your staff will feel safer as clear windows make it easier for them to spot a potential threat and take action, it also means people passing by can see into your shop, which will put off some criminals.

Notice your customers: Greet all customers as soon as they walk into your shop as criminals often check out premises before they rob them. They don't normally like places where they know they've been seen by staff.

Take extra care when opening and closing: You and your staff may be more vulnerable at these times, if it is possible try to get two people to open and close your shop. Stay alert and look out for suspicious people or vehicles. If you have any concerns, do not open your shop. Move to somewhere safe within the premises, for example into a back office.

Record suspicious incidents: Write down anything suspicious that happens in and around your premises. Include details such as descriptions of the people and vehicles involved, vehicle registration numbers and the date and time of the incident. It will also help you work out whether you need to take specific measures for particular or persistent problems.

Get to know your local police: Working closely with the police can help us keep crime down and help you protect your premises better. Let them know about anything suspicious that takes place in your shop and ask for advice on security and crime problems in your area.

Other useful tips:

  • Use a secure container for carrying cash but do not draw attention to it. If you have large amounts of cash to bank, use a recognised cash carrying company to collect it.
  • Vary your route and the times that you go to the bank. Don't use public transport. Use busy main roads and walk against the flow of the traffic.
  • Consider a personal attack/hold-up alarm for staff that is connected to a monitoring service.
  • Install a secure safe. Consider counter-drop safes, safes with time delays, night safe facilities or cash transit safes.
  • Consider CCTV equipment and position to capture a face view of anyone entering the premises.
  • Have a pre-arranged signal that you can use with colleagues to indicate that a robbery is taking place.

During a robbery

Despite taking crime prevention measures, you and your staff still need to know what to do in the event of a robbery. Firstly, remember that if you only keep small amounts of cash in your till, robbers will have little to get away with. If your premises are robbed it's important to:

  • Stay calm: try not to panic - although it's distressing, most robberies are over quickly.
  • Safety first: remember that the most important thing is the safety of you, your customers and staff.
  • Alarms: if you have a hold-up alarm, use it, but only if it is safe to do so.
  • Remember details: try to memorise as many details as you can, such as the age, sex, height and hair colour of the people involved, as well as what they are wearing and the things they are carrying. As soon as you can, write down everything you remember.

Immediately after a robbery:

  • Close your premises.
  • Call 999 and ask for police and other emergency services, if required.
  • Don't move or touch anything.