We’ve all seen it in movies and read about it on the news—stories about organized crime have intrigued us for decades. It’s scary, but most of us feel completely separated from it—and most, even in the industry, don’t even consider it when thinking about retail security.

For many retailers, organized retail crime (ORC) seems like a far-flung concept—something that couldn’t happen to them. However, ORC can happen anywhere, any time, and the effects can be devastating. The key to curbing ORC? Focusing on preventing it before it starts, and stopping criminals in their tracks—and that means knowing and acting on the warning signs of ORC.

What is Organized Retail Crime?

Organized retail crime (ORC) is any theft in a retail environment carried out by professional groups. This isn’t a “lone-wolf” shoplifter or an employee taking home a little extra cash. These are criminal organizations looking to profit in a big way.

While, again, this may seem far-flung, retail crime organizations are present in virtually every market around the globe. Within your immediate community, retailers may be impacted by small local operations or, even, major global ORC groups. Either way, these criminals are generally well-trained and know exactly what they’re doing and how to drive the biggest impact—again, these aren’t inexperienced, solo shoplifters.

How To Identify—and Stop—ORC

The best way to identify and stay ahead of ORC groups is to tap into local resources—businesses and retailers in your community who, like you, are invested in keeping ORC at bay. Stay in touch with fellow businesses in your area and commit to notifying one another if and when you spot suspicious activities.

Beyond that, be sure you have a solid security and monitoring system in place in your store. Even basic security cameras can help detect and deter crime, including ORC. Miss a theft in action? Take note of what was taken and look for any tell-tale signs or patterns you can focus on next time. Sharing this footage, noting warning signs and training your staff to act accordingly can help curb future ORC thefts.

In that vein, consider the security of, simply, greeters at the entrances and exits of your store. You’ll have a friendly face welcoming shoppers in and someone to keep tabs on odd behaviors or ORC patterns, stopping shoplifters before they leave the premises.

Also effective? Securing high-value, high-risk products. Senseon offers a host of intelligent cabinet access controls, designed to safeguard inventory while creating a more seamless, more on-brand customer experience.

What’s more, because Senseon is totally concealed within cabinets, potential thieves can’t see it — and, as a result, don’t know where to start, what to open or how to break in. That, often, is enough to deter ORC—and if it’s not, Senseon will ensure no one gets in without authorization. Once Senseon systems are locked, they instantly create an invisible barrier, using RFID technology to maximize security. Even if ORC involves employees, you’ll be able to track access and identify issues before they evolve—and, when it comes to ORC, that’s a critical step in curbing future attacks.

Learn more about Senseon’s powerful cabinet access controls, designed exclusively for retailers. Contact us for information and to schedule a consultation.