Behind the scenes of a major event

By | Event Security

We spoke with Sam, one of the InFront Security team working at a major event in Brisbane to see what his typical day looks like working to make events safe and enjoyable for guests – with all the benefit of InFront Security’s industry leading events management systems.

7:00am

I arrive at the site and talk to the team in the control room – InFront uses a state of the art custom software program called Chronicler to centrally monitor incidents and allocate resources – so I always know where I have to be and what is going on. I log in to the app on my phone and head out to the event site where crews are setting up for the day.

8:24am

As I am walking around the site to each station, the GPS on my phone tells the control room where I am (in real time), I get a call – someone has injured themselves setting up a stage – and thanks to the InFront software – I was immediately identified as the nearest first aid trained responder to the caller. Within 30 seconds I am there and stabilising his foot – hopefully just a sprain –while we wait for further help, I record the details of how the accident happened, take photos and upload everything to the control room. Before lunch today, the report will be with the event management team to review and follow up on.

10:37am

It is going to be a hot day today – our software measures temperature, wind speed and humidity in real time and the control room can alert us when high temperatures mean we need to be alert for possible medical issues.

11:15am

The control room alerts me that there is going to be cash delivered by armoured vehicle, ready for the estimated 50,000 person crowd. InFront manages the movement of cash and coordinates their plainclothes armed guards to ensure the cash is moved without issue. The routes taken and time for delivery is carefully measured, I know instantly if a delivery is taking too long – all from my phone.

12:01pm

The first guests start to arrive through the front gates. Everyone is in a great mood – but not everyone has a ticket! I respond to a call from the event staff as an intoxicated man tries to jump the fence. Luckily he doesn’t hurt himself, and QPS appreciates that we were so quick to respond with trained professional staff. Our time to respond is some of the best in the industry – and our control software can prove this to the event organisers!

1:10pm

A VIP guest has arrived and needs to be guided to a green room – I lead a team of InFront guards along the route and we make it to the green room without any interruptions from fans – thanks to our control room that ensures the route has traffic held up and door access is ready ahead of time.

5:50pm

One of the InFront guards spots a water leak that has turned a road into a swamp… I am the first one to put my hand up to drive a tractor over and dump a load of straw on the spill – and it takes me only a few minutes to log the hazard with control – traffic will be adjusted while a more permanent fix is organised.

9:12pm

My favourite part of the night, the fireworks are set and launched, InFront makes sure the crowd is safe and controls access to the danger areas – but it also means we get a front row seat. We have a strict procedure to follow – everything is clearly laid out in our app – and everything goes off without a hitch

10:30pm

The event is over – and 50,000 happy and tired guests are all heading for public transport and their cars – this is a critical time for us, as we need to ensure everyone keeps moving. All the InFront team know exactly where they need to be, and the control room gives us up-to-the-minute updates. With only a few exceptions – everyone gets to where they need to be.

11:40pm

The clean up begins – thanks to InFront’s 24 hour service and technology solutions – the event site and all staff are secure and safe overnight – ready for the next day’s event!

Interested in joining the InFront team? Submit your application – we are looking for guards from a range of backgrounds and experience levels – if you would like to work for Queensland’s leading security firm we want to hear from you.

Work For Us

Do you have an event that would benefit from InFront Security Services’ industry leading Event Management technology and professional team? Contact us to discuss your needs and how we can help make your event a success.

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How do you protect your retail premises from shoplifters?

By | Retail Security

Ever been in a store and spotted someone that doesn’t appear to be behaving like a normal shopper? Your intuition could be right on the money – literally. Unlike the tag on a pair of socks, the typical shoplifter is not a “One Size Fits All” offender. It is easy to assume that the suspicious looking kid in the dirty sneakers, black hoodie, and carrying a backpack is the one to watch but this is a misleading stereotype. Shoplifters come in all shapes and sizes and they are getting more and more cunning in their goal of ripping off Australian shop owners.

Retailers simply cannot cover all the bases when it comes to shoplifting and theft. They can exhaust themselves trying to serve their honest customers and simultaneously scan for the ever-present danger of shoplifters says Dudley van Staveren, State Security Manager for InFront Security Services. He speaks daily to frustrated retail business owners who are suffering from the impact theft has on their profitability and staff morale. Sadly, the losses incurred from retail theft in Australia are part of a multibillion dollar problem that is getting worse as the perpetrators become increasingly more sophisticated in the scams they adopt.

The reality is, technology has been a blessing and curse for retailers. Solutions such as magnetic security tags on stock and contactless payments at the register can be misused and exploited to deceive the store owners. Mr van Staveren points to such scams as price label switching to pay a cheaper price for a product, returning stolen items without receipt for refund in either cash or credit voucher, and credit card ‘cloning’ as new ways that retailers can lose money to theft. Small handheld devices are also available to quickly remove magnetic security tags, requiring greater vigilance in the changing rooms and areas out of sight of staff.

Although not a fool-proof rule of thumb, there are things to look out for if you want more than an outside chance of spotting a potential shoplifter. Watch out particularly for these signs when someone:
  • Spends time watching the staff within the store
  • Wears bulky, heavy clothing during warm weather
  • Frequently comes and goes without making a purchase
  • Appears nervous and/or is walking unnaturally
Be careful not to overlook those legitimately buying something to distract you while accomplices are walking out the store with stolen stock.

Mr van Staveren reveals that shoplifters are adept at knowing the optimum time to strike. They are sophisticated, proficient and often work in organised groups to maximise their “take”. They like a busy store and other vulnerable times when staff are opening up, closing, or during a shift change – anytime when the staff might let their guard down and be distracted momentarily.

Obviously, it’s impossible to have your merchandise permanently under lock and key so being vigilant and perhaps investing in some experienced security personnel is worth considering.  Remember, shoplifters will be looking to strike with speed and stealth so the following items categorised as the acronym CRAVED are especially attractive to them. Handheld electronics, jewellery, personal care items and clothing are all ‘CRAVED’ items targeted by shoplifters.

Concealable

Removable

Available

Valuable

Enjoyable

Disposable

The one thing shoplifters hate and will most likely see them moving on to easier pickings is pro-active sales staff who will make contact with customers and remain engaged with them for the duration of their time in the store. This may annoy customers who are just looking, but in the long run, the losses a store suffers at the hands of shoplifters are inevitably passed on to customers in higher prices, borne out of increased insurance premiums and security measures to combat crime. In 2014/2015 losses due to product theft in Australia’s retail sector were in excess of $2.4 billion. Consider the increased in-store attention to your browsing habits a necessary inconvenience.

Many retailers are now employing the services of a security guard.   On hand to greet customers and keep an eye on the comings and goings in store, their subtle yet visible presence means sales staff are then free to focus on what they do best – serving customers. A skilful and experienced security guard can act quickly, is trained to handle incidents and frequently serves as a pre-emptive deterrent for any would-be lawbreaker. Additionally, they can alert staff to customer’s needs in busy times and they will accompany personnel as a minder for the banking run.

Dudley van Staveren and the highly-trained team at InFront Security Services have over 15 years of experience in retail security. Specialising in the premium retail sector, InFront counts among its clients some of the top luxury and premium retailers in Queensland. If you are a retailer who wants your security requirements fully evaluated and a plan instigated for the ongoing protection of your business then get in touch with InFront for a confidential discussion.