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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 76947 Find in a Library
Title: Difference Between a Systems Approach and a Methods Approach
Journal: Security Management  Volume:25  Issue:5  Dated:(May 1981)  Pages:120-123,125
Author(s): Anonymous
Date Published: 1981
Page Count: 5
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: To be effective, the electronic article surveillance (EAS) should be used as a part of a security system designed to deter shoplifting, and not as another method for catching shoplifters, according to this article.
Abstract: Using an EAS system means changing a company's entire approach to security. The systems approach should begin before the store is under construction. For example, several department stores have incorporated EAS wiring into the planning of a new store. This allows for flexibility to install any kind of EAS system, once the store's shrinkage records have been evaluated. Furthermore, EAS tags should blanket an entire store, otherwise the potential shoplifter is simply directed to 'safe' merchandise. Moreover, the EAS system calls for a range of support equipment and staff, such as electronic scanners at the cashier stations to alert staff to unremoved tags, recording equipment attached to the exit scanners to record the location and frequency of alarms, and staff educated in the use of the system. Part of the effective use of the system entails careful scrutiny of the records generated by the system. For example, gaps in the alarm numbers may indicated the system is not being properly monitored. A record of tags that have been torn off merchandise and left in rest rooms, fitting areas, etc., serves to isolate potential problems and identify those areas within the store that require extra monitoring. The systems approach avoids tying up the store in costly and time-consuming shoplifting prosecutions and possible false arrest suits, since the system focuses on deterring shoplifting and not on catching shoplifters. In a full EAS systems approach, store personnel are carefully trained to approach the suspected shoplifter with courtesy and caution and to conform to court guidelines.
Index Term(s): Business security; Deterrence; Shoplifting; Surveillance equipment
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