THE RETAIL sector is continuing to operate with an evolving security threat profile. Increases in violence and abuse towards front line workers, combined with losses through shop theft and petty crime, mean that security remains firmly in focus for the modern retailer. Against that backdrop, Total Security Services (TSS) has outlined ways in which the sector should respond in the face of increasing and evolving threats, and also how the company’s recent acquisition by G4S is allowing it to expand its service to retailers.
According to the British Retail Consortium’s Retail Crime Survey for 2022, retail crime cost the industry somewhere in the region of £1.5 billion in 2020-2021, with a staggering 1,301 incidents of violent or abusive behaviour perpetrated against retail staff and on-site security personnel every day.
In order to respond to such worrying trends, it stands to reason that the modern retail security officer should operate proactively and work smarter, making the best possible use of collaboration technologies and body-worn surveillance. Given the aforementioned increase in violence on the front line, it’s no surprise that the de-escalation of aggravated situations has become a strong focus.
Brendan Musgrove, managing director at retail security specialist TSS, commented: “The skills of the traditional retail security officer need to evolve. Gone are the days where retail security could operate on a reactive basis.
What’s more, the officer of today needs to be supported by an intelligence function that’s continuously reviewing crime trends, identifying repeat offenders and sharing information proactively to support front line officers in the delivery of their role.”
In addition, today’s retail security is about much more than the High Street. As the explosion of e-commerce continued through the pandemic, so security in the supply chain began to rise in importance, with distribution centres and the theft of goods in transit a focus. Consequently, according to Musgrove, any security provision should make equal consideration of both the supply chain and the High Street.
As a company, TSS has historically delivered front line security to a number of the UK’s leading High Street retailers. Its acquisition by G4S Secure Solutions UK, itself an Allied Universal company, means that TSS is now able to evolve its services to further support customers.
The new entity combines TSS’ front line retail security experience with G4S’ varied product portfolio and broad national and international coverage, rendering this fusion an ideal combination for any retail organisation looking to address its evolving threat profile.
“TSS is excited about what the acquisition means for retail customers,” enthused Musgrove. “The new entity is already evolving the product portfolio and looking forward to providing a more intelligent approach to front line security services. Development of the ‘Crime Hub’ intelligence offer is well underway. Work is being conducted in close collaboration with customers.
Indeed, the G4S product portfolio provides great opportunities for TSS’ customers. TSS can now support retail outlets with the provision of canine security in particularly high-risk areas, realise nationwide mobile incident response for call-outs at unsocial times and even supply Artificial Intelligence-driven surveillance technology. In short, TSS’ offer within the retail store environment has greatly expanded.
Continuing this theme, Musgrove noted: “TSS is now able to provide fully integrated security into the supply chain – from surveillance and monitoring of the distribution centre to the tracking and monitoring of goods in transit.”
Importantly, TSS’ customers will now enjoy access to the G4S Academy, which provides Best-in-Class networking, information sharing and thought leadership for those with varying degrees of security responsibility.
Musgrove concluded: “These are exciting times for TSS, our customers and anyone looking to address their retail security challenges.”
*Further information is accessible online at www.totalsecurity.co.uk