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The Biggest Physical Security Threats to Businesses

Aug 26, 2022

burglar forcibly opening an entry door

Businesses face a wide variety of security threats, both online and offline. While many companies are aware of the risks posed by cyberattacks, internal data theft, and other digital threats, physical security threats to businesses are often overlooked. Whether it's a disgruntled employee, an outsider trying to break-in, or a natural disaster, there are many risks that businesses face every day.

Here are some of the biggest physical security threats to businesses you need to be aware of and how you can protect your business from them.

1. Natural Disasters

Businesses located in areas susceptible to natural disasters such as hurricanes, tornadoes, fires, earthquakes, and floods need to have a plan in place to protect their property and personnel. These natural disasters can destroy entire buildings and disrupt operations for weeks or even months. Analyzing nature-related security threats to businesses is key to protecting your investment.

Remember that when your business is vulnerable due to a natural disaster, security threats from people looking to take advantage of the situation (looting, vandalism, etc.) become a greater concern.

There are a few steps you can take to protect your business from natural disasters:

  • Identify the risks specific to your location and plan accordingly
  • Have an up-to-date emergency plan that includes evacuation procedures and designated safe areas
  • Develop a Business Continuity Plan that outlines how you will maintain operations in the event of a disaster
  • Invest in disaster-resistant building materials and construction methods
  • Make sure your insurance policy covers natural disasters
  • Train employees on what to do in the event of a natural disaster
  • Install security cameras at strategic locations around your property to deter looters and vandals

While you can't always prevent natural security threats to businesses from happening, you can minimize the damage they cause by being prepared.

2. Burglary and Robbery

Theft is still one of the biggest security threats to businesses today. According to the FBI, there were an estimated 2,103,787 burglaries in the United States in 2018. Burglaries can result in significant financial losses for businesses, as well as damage to property and equipment. Thieves will always take advantage of opportunities to steal, so it's important for businesses to take steps to deter burglars and robbers.

Whether you're a retail business, an office building, or a warehouse, there are a few security measures you can take to protect yourself from this common physical security threat to businesses:

  • Install professional-grade security cameras and alarm systems
  • Use motion-sensor lighting around the perimeter of your property
  • Keep cash on hand to a minimum
  • Lock up valuables in safes or security deposit boxes
  • Invest in quality locks for doors and windows
  • Hire security guards to man entry and exit points for busy businesses
  • Reinforce your business building with high-security doors, security bars, and grilles

By taking these precautions, you can make your business a less attractive target for thieves and help to deter robbery and burglary.

3. Internal Theft

Internal theft is another security threat to businesses that most companies don't think about. According to the National Retail Federation, employee theft is responsible for billions of dollars in losses each year. Whether it's stealing cash, inventory, or company information, employees can do a lot of damage to your business if they're not properly supervised.

In fact, one of the biggest security threats to businesses today when it comes to business data is insider theft. Employees with access to sensitive company information can sell it to competitors or criminals, which can put your entire business at risk. Here are a few steps to take to prevent internal security threats to businesses like yours:

  • Conduct background checks on all employees
  • Limit access to sensitive areas and information to only those who need it
  • Install security cameras in common areas with CCTV surveillance signs to deter crime
  • Implement security protocols for handling cash and valuables
  • Regularly audit inventory levels across your business
  • Train employees on internal security procedures
  • Have a clear reporting and disciplinary policy for security breaches

By taking these steps, you can help to create a culture of security in your business and deter employees from stealing. Don't wait until it's too late to protect your business from internal theft, which easily ruins businesses from the inside out.

4. Vandalism

Another common security threat to businesses is vandalism. This can also cause significant financial damage to businesses, as well as damage to property and equipment. In addition, vandalism can create a feeling of insecurity among employees and customers. Vandals often target businesses to send a message, to damage property out of spite, or to get access to valuables inside the business.

The most vulnerable areas of businesses to vandalism are usually windows, doors, security cameras, and outdoor signage. To protect your business from this security threat, you can take the following steps:

  • Install vandal-proof security cameras at high points around the exterior of your property
  • Reinforce glass doors and windows
  • Use impact-resistant glass for windows and doors
  • Install outdoor lighting around the perimeter of your property
  • Remove valuables from plain sight in your business
  • Hire security guards to patrol vulnerable areas of your property
  • Lock up valuables in safes or security deposit boxes
  • Invest in quality locks for all entry and exit doors
  • Regularly inspect the property for signs of vandalism
  • Report any incidents of vandalism to the police
  • Train employees on how to report and handle incidents of vandalism

Implementing these steps is one of the best ways to deal with security threats to businesses that threaten to destroy everything you've worked so hard to build.

5. Violence

sad man

While violence may not be as common as some of the other security threats to businesses on this list, it's still one of the biggest security threats to businesses. This could be in the form of workplace violence, violence against customers, or even outside violence that affects your business operations in your area.

Workplace Violence

This can happen in any type of business, but it's more common in businesses that deal with the public, such as retail stores and restaurants. Workplace violence is one of the most serious security threats to businesses and can have devastating consequences. To prevent workplace violence, it's important to take the following steps:

  • Conduct security assessments of your workplace
  • Develop security policies and procedures for employees
  • Implement security measures, such as security cameras and alarms
  • Screen employees during the hiring process for signs of violence
  • Provide training on how to handle violent situations
  • Monitor employee behavior for signs of violence
  • Quickly respond to any incidents of violence and report to relevant authorities

Violence Against Customers

This security threat to businesses is less common, but it can happen in businesses where there are large crowds, such as nightclubs and concert venues. To prevent this security threat, it's important to:

  • Have security measures in place, such as security guards and metal detectors
  • Empower your security team with live video surveillance to help solve incidents
  • Screen customers during the entry process
  • Monitor customer behavior for signs of violence
  • Quickly respond to any incidents of violence and report them

Outside Violence

This security threat is less common, but it can happen in businesses that are located in areas with high crime rates, political instability, or sudden public protests. To prevent this security threat to businesses, it's important to:

  • Monitor the situation in your area for signs of violence
  • Develop security plans for different types of violence
  • Implement security measures, such as security guards and barricades
  • Quickly respond to any incidents of violence and report them
  • Close business operations to protect your property and employees

6. Terrorism

While the threat of terrorism is often associated with large public events and instability that causes security lapses, businesses can also be targets. In fact, small businesses are often seen as easy targets by terrorists. You can never be 100% prepared for a terrorist attack, but there are steps you can take to minimize this security threat to businesses and protect your employees, customers, and property.

Some of the steps you can take to prepare for a terrorist attack include:

  • Assessing the risks of terrorism in your area and developing a security plan
  • Monitoring who accesses your workplace and interacts with workers
  • Installing video surveillance at entry and exit points
  • Screening employees during the hiring process
  • Providing training on how to handle terrorist situations
  • Creating an emergency plan for evacuating your workplace
  • Staying up to date with security alerts and intelligence reports

If you think your business is at risk of a terrorist attack, don't hesitate to contact the relevant authorities for help. If there's a recent terrorist attack in your area, be sure to take extra security precautions and follow the security plan you've developed. Authorities will also be able to provide you with more specific security advice.

Secure Your Business Against Physical Threats

The security threats to businesses are constantly changing and evolving. As a business owner, it's crucial to stay up-to-date on the latest security measures you can take to protect your business. With the right security protocols in place, you can easily prevent some of the biggest security threats to businesses. A close look at these threats shows that video surveillance is one of the most versatile security tools available to business owners.

A complete security system can enhance your security posture and protect your business from various physical security threats. At CCTV Security Pros, we supply commercial-grade surveillance systems, security cameras, and associated equipment. We're a trusted brand by 60,000+ customers and can help you find or customize the best system for your business.


Call 888.653.2288 to speak with a security expert about how we can help you deal with physical security threats to businesses today.

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