A New Theft Scam That You Haven’t Heard Of!

Owning a business is tough enough without having to worry about creative thieves. Currently there are 2 offenses that are going unnoticed, until it is too late.

Photo credit: Kansas City Police

1. Foil covering a satellite dish (used to block credit card transactions)

How the crime is committed: A thief will climb onto the roof of a business and cover a satellite dish with aluminum foil. Then the thief will walk into a store and use a stolen credit card to purchase an exorbitant amount of a product, for example, $1665 worth of cigarettes at a  Kansas City store.

The Victim: Retail shops

Why You Need to Be Wary: “The thieves may be targeting neighborhood businesses because big-box stores, with their higher sales volume, are more likely to discover something amiss sooner.” Bottom line: thieves are long gone by the time you discover the purchase has not processed properly.

copper theft

2. Copper wire theft

How the crime is committed: Thieves will strip a property for copper, especially air conditioning units, and sell the metal to scrap dealers.

The Victim: schools, churches, scrap yards, recycling centers

Why You Need to Be Wary: The price of copper has risen to $3-4/lb, increasing the risk of copper theft since 2004. The five leading states for the thefts are Ohio, Texas, Georgia, California and Illinois, according to the National Insurance Crime Bureau.

“Distinguishing between new and recycled copper is difficult if not impossible,” and “limp penalties, little prosecution and a lack of jurisdictional leadership” all lead to an easy crime for thieves. It can not only cause damage and expensive repairs for your property, it can also be very dangerous. In Berkeley, CA, a power outage at the University of CA, Berkeley triggered an explosion and fire, believed to be directly related to a underground copper wire theft at the campus.

One of the best ways to protect yourself is to be proactive. We recommend a Videofied security system, which is a wireless video alarm security system that sends video alarms over a cellular network or IP network, and can be managed by your personal computer or smartphone from anywhere.

Videofied systems are battery powered and can be used indoors or outdoors to give you the best picture quality and reliability in remote or harsh environments. By transmitting over a cellular or IP network, results are delivered quickly and privately without the requirements of a specialized network. Videofied cameras feature indoor MotionViewer technology to display color video during the day and monochrome at night or in dark environments. Real time photos and videos can be sent to your smartphone instantly. Learn more about this security system here, and keep these crimes on your radar!