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Armed Robbery Spikes in U.S. and U.K. Causing Concerns Among Chaldeans
By Paul Gori :: Thursday, July 16, 2009 :: 18428 Views :: Article Rating :: Business & Finance

The U.S. and the U.K. may be mired in what was once thought of as a Third World style of financial crisis, but what was once considered the Third World is not.  Local, state, and national governments in both America and Europe are seeing a significant spike in crime and fraud. 

“Giving home loans to every person that walked into a mortgage or bank loan office is the root of all the problems,” says Mary Hessu, a banker with Community Bank in Michigan.  “America was supposed to be about equal opportunity and earning your way.  Giving undeserving people loans for some social engineering experiment has rocked the world.”

Hessu says the consequences of America’s politicians poor decisions is unemployment and crime.  “Crime is skyrocketing and Chaldeans who happen to own businesses are the victims.  Stores are being burglarized, check cashing fraud, and identity theft is hurting out community.”

All experts agree that the very best way for Chaldeans to prevent an armed robbery is to send a message that your business is not an easy target and not worth the effort. In this article, www.CHALDEAN.org covers the most helpful tips in preventing armed robbery for Chaldean small business owners. 

Limit the cash you have on hand
The less cash held on your person or on the premises, the less attractive you are as a target. Keep under $100 on you or on the premises if possible, especially at night. If you run a business, advertise the fact that you keep a minimum of cash on the premises. Providing credit facilities also reduces the amount of cash you need to hold. Electronic Fund Transfer at Point of Sale (EFTPOS) is one example.

Keep money where it can't be reached
Deposit money in banks or secure holding units frequently. Use a cash drop box with a time delay lock and advertise this with a sign if you have a business.

Keep money out of sight
Don't advertise your dough: never flash a large roll of bills or have a cash drawer that customers can easily see. 

Never count cash in view of customers
This one's pretty self-explanatory, but businesses targeted for robbery are often noted for counting cash in front of customers.  Also, if you're really worried about robbery, adding an extra twist such as requiring exact money in transactions means you do not have to count dollars or keep open cash tills, especially at night. Robbers may tender large bills specifically to find out where you keep them. Time-controlled vaults also reduce the opportunity for theft. Advertise them with signs.

Keep the business well-lit
Be sure that the business is brightly lit inside and outside.  Criminals  are always concerned that they will be noticed.  Having a well-lit businesses sends the message that the chances of being caught are much higher here. 

Avoid routine
Do not establish a routine time and route to make withdrawals or deposits. Do not wear a uniform identifying the business and vary routes and times.  Chaldean business owners have reported robbers following them form their stores to banks.  Also, make your bank deposits at two or three different bank branches.  It has also been reported that bank workers and tellers tip-off robbers as to the routine and who the cash heavy customers are.

For Chaldean Store Owners 

Keep a clear and uncluttered environment
An open and uncluttered environment which provides a clear, well-lit view of the area is a fine deterrent to armed robbers. Making the target highly visible increases the chances of someone identifying the criminal.  Also, an uncluttered environment portrays a business owner that is organized and professional.  This psychologically sends a message to a robber that the business if more likely to be a difficult victim.

Strong doors and locks
All exterior doors should be of solid construction with good quality locks. Bars on windows at businesses may be necessary. Make sure people can see into business during working hours. But if you count money at night, make sure the premises are secured and you are not visible from outside.

Customers do not belong behind counters. Design counters to maximize space between staff and customers. Deep counters with raised floors behind make it difficult for offenders to assault staff.

Clear view
The route from the service area to the front door needs to be such that there's an uninterrupted view, and the display stands have to be put in such a way that staff members can see clearly to the door.

Signs and surveillance
Signs and surveillance cameras often help deter criminals and help in their apprehension. Make sure they are displayed openly and equipment well-maintained and serviced regularly.

Mirrors
Mirrors allow business staff to monitor otherwise blind spots, but make sure they don't allow offenders to see behind the counter.

Electronic sensors
Electronic sensors can alert you when anyone is entering or leaving the premises.

Report
Staff should note any suspicious behavior and report it to the police. This can often nip an offense in the bud. Be careful about personal name tags, especially with surnames, as this can place staff at risk after a robbery. When selecting new staff, ask for references and check them out.

Get keys back
When staff leave, make sure you get the keys back. If keys are missing or you feel the old employee may be not be trustworthy, change the locks. It may also be wise to change locks, safe combinations and even cash-handling procedures if staff leave under difficult or strange circumstances.

Chaldeans are known for their hard-working ethic and driven desire to care for their family.  However, both can be easily and tragically lost when you become a victim of a robbery.  The saying that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure is something every Chaldean business owner should be mindful of when working.