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U.S. Retail Cash Theft Up

Published by Retail Knowledge and sponsored by Volumatic, the US Retail Fraud Survey 2015, now in its third year, is an extensive study of the retail fraud and loss prevention systems, processes and strategies employed by of 100 of the US’s top retailers.

The latest Survey showed that cash theft, one of the top areas of store loss for retailers, represents the second biggest area of store loss at 26% of shrink. This is an 8% increase since last year’s Survey.

The Survey also revealed that, during the same period, the number of stores using secure cash storage systems at the POS dropped by 2%.

James Harris of Volumatic, one of the US Retail Fraud Survey sponsors, emphasizes the importance of utilizing intelligent cash handling systems:

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“On a per transaction basis, cash remains the cheapest, fastest and most popular way for retailers to accept payment, representing an important opportunity for retailers.

Those retailers wishing to take advantage of this opportunity are increasingly employing intelligent cash handling systems to substantially reduce cash shrink, enhance security, streamline cash handling processes and deliver significant operational efficiencies.

Whilst to suggest that the reduction in use of secure POS is directly responsible for the dramatic increase in cash shrink would be to oversimplify a complex issue, those retailers affected may well wish to review their cash handling systems, in the light of this information, and re-examine how they store, validate, count and move their cash; both around their stores and to their bank.”

Other areas of store loss highlighted by the Survey include:

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  • Employee theft is identified as the biggest area of store loss at 38% of shrink
  • Administrative and bookkeeping errors account for the third biggest area of loss at 23%; a 10% increase
  • Shoplifting is the fourth biggest area of loss in stores at 11%

The outputs of the Retail Fraud Survey aids the loss prevention community benchmark themselves against their contemporaries and to identify opportunities to engage with their businesses, as well as each other, to win back some of the multi-billion dollar hole in profits that is being created through shrinkage.

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