Study: 28% of Businesses Report Increase in Theft, Vandalism in 2022

Nearly 30% of businesses reported an increase in “physical security incidents” in 2022. That matches the same 28% jump in business crime reported in 2021, which had followed a 20% gain in 2020.

Study: 28% of Businesses Report Increase in Theft, Vandalism in 2022

Among the reasons that businesses believe they experienced more crime are (in order) the state of the economy, supply chain issues, security guard shortages, insider problems and reduced business hours.

The increase in news reports and social media videos showing indiscriminate business crime are being validated by hard data. According to The State of Physical Security Entering 2023 report from Pro-Vigil, 28% of businesses reported an increase in “physical security incidents” in 2022. That matches the same 28% jump in business crime reported in 2021, which had followed a 20% gain in 2020.

The alarming 3-year growth trend in security incidents does not show any signs of slowing, as 29% of businesses anticipate an increase in security-related activities this year. In particular, the construction industry seems to be most ripe for crime, with 66% of construction-related businesses reporting they experienced at least one physical security incident in 2022.

The study, which is in its third year, surveyed businesses such as car/truck/boat/RV dealerships, construction companies, manufacturers, and public sector education. The study never actually defines what it deems to be a “physical security incident,” but cites theft and vandalism as the two biggest business crime problems noted. Nearly half (48%) experienced some type of theft last year, while 13% had vandalism occur.

pro-vigil camera

Among the reasons that businesses believe they experienced more crime are (in order) the state of the economy, supply chain issues, security guard shortages, insider problems and reduced business hours. Meanwhile, 11% don’t know why they experienced more security encounters last year.

The cost of this business crime has resulted in project delays, lost cash flow, decreased levels of customer service, damage to their brand or reputation, and even a change in business hours.

As a result of the increased crime, businesses report taking several actions. Nearly half (47%) installed video surveillance cameras, while others installed fencing (22%), intrusion alarm systems (14%), access control (7%) and/or added security guards (7%). However, 42% of businesses did nothing.

Pro-Vigil is a remote monitoring company that provides video monitoring as a service. The study concludes that businesses would benefit from an increase in remote video monitoring to help curb crime. According to the study, only 42% of businesses are using some form of remote video monitoring for criminal activity.

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About the Author

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Jason Knott is Chief Content Officer for Emerald Expositions Connected Brands. Jason has covered low-voltage electronics as an editor since 1990, serving as editor and publisher of Security Sales & Integration. He joined CE Pro in 2000 and serves as Editor-in-Chief of that brand. He served as chairman of the Security Industry Association’s Education Committee from 2000-2004 and sat on the board of that association from 1998-2002. He is also a former board member of the Alarm Industry Research and Educational Foundation. He has been a member of the CEDIA Business Working Group since 2010. Jason graduated from the University of Southern California. Have a suggestion or a topic you want to read more about? Email Jason at jason.knott@emeraldexpo.com

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