Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Theft Prevention

The Coin Laundry Business lends itself to various form of theft that are common to most businesses as well as unique to the Laundromat business. Some forms are the obvious ones such as thieves stealing directly from you and other forms come from employees, customers, etc. Therefore, it is important to keep a close eye on the operation at all times. Here are some of the situations that every Laundromat owner should be aware of:

Money Collections

Since most Laundromat owners like to collect revenues every few days or once a week, the potential for loss is greater is one is victim to a robbery. Always do the following in order to avoid direct robbery:

- Install security cameras: The advantage is obvious, you can have every single movement recorded and it serves as a deterrent to potential troublemakers.

- Never collect money at night, try to do so very early in the morning or when there are people present in the business.

- Collect money prior to leaving the store. Avoid collecting money and storing in the store while doing other functions such as machine repair, store maintenance, etc.

- Never talk to customers while collecting money. There are thieves whose strategy is to distract their victim prior to robbing them.

- Collect money on different days. Try not to be predictable, watch your perimeter and see if anyone is watching you.

- Never share keys with anyone. An employee or someone else might make a copy of the keys and have access to critical areas of your store and equipment. Keys should be in your possession at all times.

Theft from Machines

Sometimes robbery occurs in an passive manner such as tampering with your washers and dryers. The most common forms of theft from Machines are:

- Placing an obstacle between the coin drop and the coin box to divert coins to be collected. This happens when machines lids are open, therefore always make sure your lids are closed and your employees do not have access to this area.

- Triggering washer or dryer credit with wire. Some thieves are clever enough to use wires to trigger coin credits on your machines. Sometimes it is your own employee doing it, sometimes it is someone who knows how to do this and charges a discounted price in order to give customers credit.

Card System Theft

There are many security advantages to a card system, such as avoiding the display of coins to people in the store to see. However, this system is not full proof and there have been issues with revenue loss due to these machines. The most common issues are:

- Cards issues by hackers: The card system works with a magnetic trip that indicates a certain amount of credit in them. Hackers have figured out how to add credit to cards and sell them on the internet. Thus there are people who will come wash for free using these cracked laundry cards.

- Security codes: Each machine has security codes which in turn can be used by people to make cards to sell them on your Laundromat. Some will purposely jam your card vending machine so they in turn can sell theirs. Always protect your codes and never give them to anyone.


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