Crime

Ahead of the Holiday Weekend, JSA Shares Security Advice

CrimeJun 30, 2023

Ahead of the Holiday Weekend, JSA Shares Security Advice

Jewelers need to make sure their cameras are working, and someone has to respond to any and all alerts from the alarm company, JSA said.

Stock image of handcuffs and a gavel
The Jewelers’ Security Alliance gave tips on preventing burglaries over the upcoming long weekend and shared other security advice in a webinar held earlier this week called “Protecting Your Store: Essential Security Measures.” Jewelers of America and The Plumb Club hosted the webinar.
New York—The importance of responding to alarms and inspecting the roof were just a couple of the security tips Jewelers’ Security Alliance President John J. Kennedy and Vice President Scott Guginsky shared during a webinar held Wednesday afternoon. 

The webinar followed the release of JSA’s annual crime report for 2022, a record year for the number of crimes committed against jewelers, and came just ahead of what will be a long holiday weekend for many stores, which will be closed Tuesday for July 4. 

On the whole, jewelry crime is evenly distributed throughout the year. There is no week or month that’s inherently more or less dangerous than any other, Kennedy said during the webinar. 

There is, however, sometimes a spike in burglaries over long weekends, as criminals are aware jewelry stores will be closed—and empty—for more than just a day or two.  

“Historically, we’ve had burglaries over Fourth of July weekend,” Guginsky said. 

A burglary is defined as a crime in which the perpetrator enters or hides in a premises to commit a crime after closing. This includes safe attacks and three-minute burglaries, named for the amount of time they take to commit. 

The number of burglaries reported to JSA increased 56 percent between 2021 and 2022, the organization’s annual report shows, while dollars losses grew 29 percent to $42.7 million. 

In order to help prevent burglaries, especially over holiday weekends, Guginsky said jewelers must respond to all types of notifications from their alarm company such as power interruptions—burglars have and will cut a store’s power lines in order to disable the alarm system—and motion sensors being tripped. 

If the owner is not available, then an employee needs to respond. Guginsky said stores should have an in-case-of-alert list that the alarm company can go down until they reach someone, particularly during holidays when multiple people might be on vacation. 

“These holidays weekends, we see that problem,” he said.

And, he said, whoever responds to the alarm needs to go to the store with the police and inspect all the entrances as well as the roof, in the event the perpetrators are attempting to enter the store through the top.  

They also should alert the police that the suspects could be near the store, watching to see if and how the owner or employees respond when the power lines are cut. 

Guginsky also recommended that stores have line security and talk to their alarm company about installing a back-up battery for the alarm that will last at least 72 hours in the event power to the store is cut. 

 Related stories will be right here … 

In addition to giving advice for protecting stores over the long weekend, Guginsky and Kennedy shared general security advice that’s applicable all year-round.

Tips included safe safety—they recommend having a TRTL 30x6 and not positioning it alongside and outside wall or a wall that’s shared with a neighboring business—and calling it to the landlord’s attention if the business next to a jewelry store is empty.

“You can’t just leave a vacant store next to a jewelry store,” Kennedy said. “It’s all ingredients for disaster.”

He also noted the importance of testing alarms and cameras to make sure they are recording, and of keeping surveillance video for a minimum of 30 days and storing it securely in the cloud.

The full recording of “Protecting Your Store” webinar is available in The Plumb Club’s Jeweler’s Resource Center (navigate to the “View” area) and on the organization’s website

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