Your restaurant helps form the backbone of your community by providing a place for people to connect over a delicious meal. As a gathering place in your neighborhood, you can help play a role in making it safer — and that starts with adding the right security measures.
Whether you run a bustling fast casual joint or a fine dining restaurant, follow these tips to help keep it secure.
Mount Indoor and Outdoor Security Cameras
Your restaurant is home to many lively moments — and if they ever turn a little too lively, it can be helpful to have footage. Ring security cameras allow you to capture a clear view of what’s happening around your restaurant each day. With a Ring Protect subscription, sold separately, you can even get snapshots1 throughout the day, so you know how things are going even if you’re running errands or meeting with a new supplier.
To get the most coverage you can, mount Stick Up Cams in entrances and exits, above cash registers and point of sale (POS) systems, in inventory rooms, and across the dining room and kitchen.
While most of the action may happen inside your restaurant, don’t forget about protecting the exterior. Outdoor security cameras help you keep watch over your outdoor spaces. With a Floodlight Cam and a Ring Protect subscription, sold separately, you can illuminate dark areas at night and automatically capture footage when motion is detected, potentially warding off a thief who wants to snag your expensive patio furniture. And video doorbells can help you watch an early morning food delivery by sending Motion Alerts to your Ring App.
Install a Security System
When you’re prepping for the day, cleaning up after close, or locked up for the night, a security system like Ring Alarm can help you watch out for unwanted visitors.
Ring Alarm comes with Contact Sensors, which trigger the Base Station’s siren if someone opens a door or window while the system is armed. Motion Detectors send mobile alerts when motion is detected2 indoors with a Ring Protect subscription, sold separately.
Whether your restaurant is strictly drive-thru or has an expansive footprint with several doors and windows, you can customize Ring Alarm to get the number of sensors you need. You can easily install the system on your own, but you also have the option to hire a professional. And if business starts booming and you need to move to a larger location, you can pack up Ring Alarm and take it with you.
When you subscribe to Ring Protect Pro3, sold separately, you’ll be sent real-time notifications to your phone when the Alarm gets triggered — and you can enroll in 24/7 Alarm Professional Monitoring4 to ensure nothing gets missed. Plus, if your employees need to request emergency assistance, you can add an optional Panic Button to your Alarm and immediately notify the Alarm Professional Monitoring Center. For even more protection, you can add a separate Virtual Security Guard subscription (sold separately)5, which allows highly trained Rapid Response professionals to monitor your compatible and enrolled cameras and use Two-Way Talk to try and deter suspicious activity.
Implement a Cash Handling Strategy
If your restaurant uses registers to store cash, it’s best to keep only a small amount of money inside and move the rest to a heavy safe. Don’t move cash on a schedule; have a trusted manager bring extra money to the safe at random intervals, so visitors can’t detect a pattern. Deposit cash in the bank at the end of the day or sooner if you have a significant amount of cash transactions.
Cash is much more challenging to track than card transactions, which is why you should implement a detailed recordkeeping system. POS systems can help you record incoming and outgoing cash, but if your waitstaff takes money directly to the safe, you should ensure that they write down the amount received. Then, you can compare the amount of cash to your records to check for discrepancies — and make sure you have a procedure in place when the inevitable inconsistency occurs.
Use High-Quality Locks and Access Control
Using heavy-duty locks that are difficult to breach, like double-cylinder locks that require a key to unlock both sides, or high-quality smart locks with a code, provides extra security to your restaurant’s entry points. Rekey locks or change the code regularly to prevent unauthorized access.
You should also consider access control systems for restricted areas, like a back office that contains a safe or a storage room with expensive supplies. You can add a lock with a keypad or badge system, which only allows select employees to enter.
Keep Your Parking Lot and Exterior Well-Lit
Dark storefronts, sidewalks, and parking lots can provide a hidden spot for intruders to sneak around at night. Keeping your restaurant well-lit around the clock can help prevent late-night lurkers and provide a safer environment for employees to get to their cars after closing up.
If you don’t want to leave every light on 24/7, you can use motion-activated Spotlights and Floodlights to help provide illumination when someone walks by. Your employees will have a bright path to the parking lot, and unwanted visitors can learn they can’t hang around your building undetected.
Stay Up to Date With What’s Happening in Your Community
Your restaurant, along with neighboring eateries, is part of what makes your community shine. When you work with other small businesses and the people who help them flourish, you can help create a safer place to live, shop, and socialize among friends.
Staying connected is simple with the Neighbors App by Ring. This App gives you access to real-time information from people nearby, and you can leave comments or share your own post to help notify neighbors. Local agencies can also share tips and updates to keep you and your community informed, making the Neighbors App your single, convenient source for critical safety information.
Download the Neighbors App today to connect with other businesses and people across your community, and see how you can come together to help make your neighborhood safe.