Theft in stores: 3 functions of video cameras that reduce shoplifting by 2 times

Theft in stores: 3 functions of video cameras that reduce shoplifting by 2 times

You probably didn’t know that all retail stores put 5% on the price of goods to compensate for theft. Did you know that theft in shops is partly paid by respectable citizens? The volume of shoplifting is colossal around the world. According to the report of a special commission at UNESCO, shoplifting (taking goods out of a store without payment) is the most widespread type of offense in the world over the past 30 years.

Our article is about how special functions of video cameras can be used to reduce the level of shoplifting by 2 times. Read to the end.

World statistics of shoplifting

World statistics say that the loss of supermarkets in Europe from theft is distributed as follows:

  • Russia is in the lead — 3% of trade;
  • second place belongs to Great Britain — 1.75%;
  • third place belongs to Greece — 1.73%;
  • fourth place is shared by France, Norway, Spain — from 1.53 to 1.59%;
  • top five is closed by Switzerland — less than 1% (0.87%).

Statistics in Russia

Experts at JosDeVries The Retail note that chain losses (theft + disposal of expired goods) account for 9% of the total trade of Russian retailers. At the same time, in the 4th quarter of 2020, cases of theft increased by 12-15%, and in relation to the indicators of the previous year, by 22-25%.

Thieves statistics:

  • in perfumery shops, the proportion of women is 78%;
  • in grocery stores the share of men is 77%.

The most “popular” products among shoplifters in 2020 are:

  • alcohol;
  • packed chocolate and sweets;
  • coffee;
  • cheeses;
  • sausages;
  • seafood;
  • fruits.

Among non-food items in the list of shoplifters, the leaders are:

  • hairspray;
  • nail polish;
  • lipstick;
  • eyeshadow;
  • body oil;
  • mascara;
  • razors and accessories.

And a few words about the origin of the total losses in retail. Axis, which actively cooperates with representatives of retail chains, reports that the main causes of losses are:

  • 33.3% — internal theft and violations of labor processes;
  • 32.9% — theft by buyers;
  • 26.2% — errors, including technical and administrative;
  • 7.6% — supplier fraud.

What are the anti-theft measures?

Today, in order to combat theft, the following methods are used:

  1. Imposition of material responsibility on sellers.
  2. Control of reporting.
  3. Control of computers.
  4. Regular inventories and audits.
  5. Conducting unscheduled inspections.
  6. Strengthening control in the trading floor, as well as at the store entrances/exits.
  7. Installation of electronic anti-theft systems (frames).
  8. Reducing staff turnover.
  9. Video surveillance system for a store.

New and creative methods

Retailer security experts say it is a skill to capture a theft from a store, but it is especially hard to prevent theft from happening. In other words, only preventive measures can reduce shoplifting, in particular:

Also, store owners have resorted to different creative ways to deal with thieves. They:

  • refuse from self-service checkouts, where the lion’s share of thefts by buyers occurs;
  • reduce the area, as an increase in area turns into higher risks and costs of protecting the store;
  • create “walls of honor” for local thieves and place them in an easy-to-spot place;
  • hang mirrors;
  • use locked showcases;
  • hang dummy cameras;
  • use micro cameras for covert surveillance, which is fraught with criminal liability. Also, materials obtained from camouflaged cameras cannot be used as evidence in an investigation.

3 functions of video cameras, which can reduce theft by 2 times

However, the most effective tool in the fight against shoplifting is the introduction of video surveillance systems based on artificial intelligence. A striking example is video surveillance from the international company called Faceter, designed specifically for stores.

TOP 3 main trends in video analytics for stores:

  1. Control of cash zones and cash transactions.

How it works:

  • cameras are installed in the cashier area, capable of precise detailing of operations;
  • they are connected to the cloud for reliable storage of video recordings;
  • special option is introduced into the surveillance system — video analytics of cash transactions. It is aimed at continuously recording and tracking the actions of staff and customers in the checkout area;
  • owner of the smart video monitoring system receives reports on each cashier.
  1. Maintaining lists.

Did you know that Faceter has intelligence, vision and hearing? It is capable of recognizing faces with an accuracy of 99.8% and maintaining black and white lists (persona non grata and VIP). In the event that a visitor from a white or black list enters the store, a quick notification is triggered: message is sent to the phone of the system owner. Petty shoplifters visit the same stores regularly.

  1. Detailing the labor process.

Do you want to know how much time (in minutes) your employee spent on an operation? For example, how much time did they spend with the client, and how much — putting the goods on the shelves? By the way, innovative video analytics is also capable of monitoring empty shelves. All the detailed information on the control of labor processes is here.


Look up “store theft video” and the search engine will return more than 23 million results. There is a colossal number of videos from crime scenes online. Retailers themselves try not to advertise the facts of theft, but are constantly working on methods to combat shoplifters. Experts say that a store that does not have video surveillance installed or uses a primitive (outdated) system will always suffer huge losses.

Александр Вебер

Alexander Weber

Specialist in video surveillance, video analytics, cloud storage systems. Consultant on the integration of video surveillance systems and tools in various business sectors. Over 10 years of industry experience.

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