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Marketing manager, BFT Automation

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Emily Thompson is marketing manager for BFT Automation, which develops innovative access automation solutions for residential, commercial and urban contexts. It has more than 500 distributors in 120 countries.
December 20, 2016


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How to choose the right security tech for your small business

business-gatesUK businesses suffered more than 30,000 separate incidents of physical crime in 2015, according to the Commercial Victimisation Survey.

From fraud and vandalism, to theft and assault, these industry-sector wide businesses lost profit, custom, loyal staff members and financial credit to these breaches of security.

And it’s increasingly likely these records might be surpassed when figures from 2016 are announced.

Choosing the right security technology is so important to help protect your business, your employees and yourself from the financial, physical and mental strain an incident of crime. And as many of the criminals tend to target small, family-run and independent businesses as soft targets, it’s even more important to defend your small business against these threats.

What do you need to protect?

When choosing security technology, one of the first things to consider is ‘what do I need to secure?’ Obviously, we would love to keep every aspect of our businesses safe, but when challenged with a limited budget, it’s necessary to prioritise.

If the property your business is based on is your key asset, invest in rolling shutters for privacy, electric locks, access controls and automation systems.

You’ll need to control who can enter and leave your company, and what they’re leaving with. You can do this with an electronic card and lock systems which allow employees to register in and out of the building so you keep a complete audit trail of all staff movements.

Be mindful with how many key-holders you entrust with the building alarm code. It’s also imperative that you update the code regularly, especially when employees or contractors such as cleaners leave.

If you store cash on the premises overnight, use your tech to secure your profit. CCTV, alarm systems and thermal scanners can provide the extra level of security a simple locked door and rusty padlock just can’t provide.

Once you know exactly what you want to protect, whether it’s your property, your products, your assets, or your employees, selecting the right security technology should come naturally.

Choosing the right security company 

One of the biggest mistakes a business can make when securing their assets is choosing the wrong company. Allowing a security team into your building, your office or factory gives them intimate access to your business and an acknowledgement of its weakest points.

You put both yourself and your business at risk when investing in security installation – so how do you make sure the company you hire is trustworthy?

If you’re outsourcing online, it’s important to look for high quality websites, genuine case studies with links to satisfied customers, industry approval logos, social media links, customer reviews and so on.

A quick maps search for their listed headquarters should help you determine the legitimacy of their branding and where possible arrange your first meeting in their office, rather than yours.

A competent, trustworthy security company will have the best interests for your business at heart, and will be just as keen to protect your assets as you are.

What works for your business?

Another issue to consider when assessing your security solutions is your potential for expansion. If you’re a business with an expected growth rate that requires relocation, staff recruitment or larger budgetary allowances, then this is the time to plan for that. Consider security technologies that work for both big businesses and small, or access systems with larger capacities for longer recorded events.

If you want to be as involved in your security controls as possible, but know that your role requires you to be ‘out of office’, then opt for hands-free remote alarm and security systems. And if everything in your property shuts down at the same time each working day, automatic gates, lights and locks might just work better for you.

Knowing your business inside out is a great way to protect it, and finding the right technology to do that is a job only you can do.

Don’t forget cyber security

With the Commercial Victimisation Survey quoting more than 5,200 separate incidents of reported crime online, new technologies are making it easier for hackers to access your details. Fraud, online theft, phishing emails, and hacking are just some of the threats facing any business online, and just as much time should be taken to protect your virtual business as your physical one.

Bringing in a cyber security consultancy can help you identity weak spots in your existing security ways to strengthen them. Even if most of your profit comes from offline trade, your accounts, business details and personal details can still be accessed and abused if not properly secured.

If online services are a major part of your business, then make the right moves to protect it.

With so many new technologies available in security and protection, it’s easier than ever to secure your business assets. So rather than becoming another figure in this year’s Commercial Victimisation Survey poll, research what works for your business and protect yourself first.


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