Ottawa Police provide tips to increase the safety of your business during temporary closure

(Retail store clerk. Photo: Ottawa Police Service)

Ottawa Police Service have provided suggestions and best practises that business owners can take to increase security to their properties during the temporary closing —

  • Remove all valuables from store front displays. This will help mitigate smash and grab scenarios such as jewelry and electronic stores.
  • Remove all valuables such as cash from the till and leave open. Place the cash tray in plain view on the counter to signal there’s no money in the till.
  • Consider installing an alarm monitoring system. If one is already present ensure the contact list is up to date.
  • Clearly post signage on the door/window to indicate premises is:
    • Monitored by alarm company;
    • No money is kept on premises; and
    • Contact information for the police and business owner in the event a member of the public observes damage to property or suspicious activity.
  • If the premise is closed for an extended period of time, clean all glass surfaces and create a tracking log of when cleaning was completed. This may assist investigators with suspect fingerprints if a break in occurs.
  • Consider installing a surveillance camera system that can be monitored online by owner/management.
  • Consider using a laminate on all windows and glass doors to increase glass integrity from blunt force. Although damage to glass will occur in an attempt break in, it will greatly discourage or prevent entry.
  • Install latch guards on doors to protect against prying, this should include secondary doors such as employee and loading entrances.
  • Keep some lighting on inside for surveillance opportunities during the evening.
  • Ensure all doors are properly secured and regularly check all exterior lighting is functioning.
  • Remove material around the exterior of property that maybe be used to gain entry into the premises (brick, metal poles and construction materials)

General protective measures 

  • Keep the interior, front and rear entrances well lighted.
  • Keep advertising and merchandise out of windows as much as possible.
  • Always keep the rear and side doors locked.
  • Maintain a record of decoy or “bait” currency to be given to a robber.
  • Be sure your alarms are in good working order at all times.
  • Do not open your place of business before or after regular business hours.
  • Avoid routine procedures which can be observed and used to the advantage of would-be robbers.
  • Call the police if a request is received to open after regular hours.

For further information please refer to the attached link:


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