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December 5, 2011 SUBSCRIBE

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Charming Shoppes 3Q reports same store sales down 4% with total revenue down 7.3% and they plan on selling their Fashion Bug division. (Source

A pair of fleeing shoplifters from a Kohl's store Friday night fired shots at security guards chasing them in the parking lot. GREELEY, Colo. -- Two men face attempted murder charges after a bizarre perfume-and-cologne shoplifting spree at a Greeley Kohl's ended in gunfire, police said Sunday. No one was hurt and the pair was eventually arrested. (Source

Retail crime increases about 30% this time of year as people crowd malls and retail centers for holiday shopping, according to some police departments across the region. D.C. area police are deploying extra patrols and specialized units, both uniformed and undercover to protect shoppers, employees and businesses. (Source

The New York Times is even running the story about Chicago's Cook County's Regional Organized Crime task force and how successful it's been. In recent years, some retail theft rings have become more sophisticated than the local efforts to combat them. Despite the advances by shoplifting gangs, Chief McCarthy now believes Orland Park’s police are better equipped to battle professional boosters. The reason: A year-old campaign led by the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office to organize local, state and federal law enforcement — and leverage the antitheft resources of retailers — to foil the thieves. The Cook County Regional Organized Crime task force includes representatives from major retailers as varied as Abercrombie & Fitch, Home Depot, Macy’s and Walgreens. Local police departments from Chicago and dozens of suburbs participate, as do federal agencies including the Department of Homeland Security. The task force took one of its first public bows two weeks ago when the Cook County state’s attorney, Anita Alvarez, led a multimedia news conference. The sting, called Operation Whoville in a tip of the striped hat to Dr. Seuss’s Grinch books, took place this fall in two-day operations, one each at Orland Square Mall, Woodfield Mall and on North Michigan Avenue. This article was also picked up in the Chicago news cooperative today as well. (Source

The gang member who killed a security guard in an Aldi's store robbery this November was arrested this weekend. His accomplice who had been arrested shortly after the robbery and shooting hung himself in jail. (Source

Employees are planning to do more online holiday shopping while on the job this year, a new survey shows. And many will be using their personal smartphones and tablets. In two surveys, ISACA found that the average American will spend 32 hours shopping online this holiday season, with 18 of those hours spent on a personal smartphone or tablet that's also used for work. Because those devices connect to corporate networks and access data at times, precautions need to be taken to keep hackers at bay, ISACA officials said. To prevent potential problems, companies need to educate their employees, Stroud suggested. Employers need to advise workers to remember to download OS updates, use strong passwords and avoid opening email attachments from strangers. Understanding the corporate policy for when IT may wipe a device clean is also essential. (Source

The $60 billion global computer security industry has become a hot sector for a range of investors, including mainstream IT companies, aerospace, defense giants and private equity, a PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) analysis has reported. With the exception of the recessionary year of 2009, the last three years has seen a M&A mini-boom with spending on security companies rising every year to reach record heights in 2011, which has already recorded $10.1 billion of deals. (Source

What We Learned from the Black Friday-Cyber Monday Shopping Extravaganza There are still nearly four prime shopping weeks to go before Christmas, but now that the Black Friday-Cyber Monday consumer bonanza is over, some observations seem in order: Consumers like the idea of shopping at midnight on Thanksgiving. Consumers like shopping (from home) on Thanksgiving Day too. Younger consumers and men are more likely to shop late at night. Even after splurging in stores, consumers will splurge online. Credit card use appears to be on the rise. Black Friday shoppers are capable of pretty horrendous behavior. Big sales numbers don’t necessarily mean good things for the economy. (Source

The Transported Asset Protection Association is rolling out global security standards for trucking and the first trucking security certification program for motor carriers and logistics service providers in the U.S. and abroad. The program fills a gap in cargo security, the lack of international security standards and a certification program for the most ubiquitous mode of transportation. The program is aimed at transporters of high-value goods targeted by cargo thieves. Globally, 85% of all major cargo theft involves trucks, said Alan Spear, chair of TAPA Americas. He said theft costs businesses more than $10 billion a year worldwide, according to Bloomberg. In some countries, it’s increasingly violent and deadly to truck drivers. John Tabor, director of corporate security for NRS, joined TAPA’s board of directors and will chair a committee on the trucking requirements. (Source

On average, it takes a company 24 months to discover expense account fraud
, according to a 2010 report by the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners. And this kind of fraud is more than four times as likely to occur within a business as corruption or financial statement fraud. And whether or not companies are using an automated system or manually compiling expense reports with receipts, without constant oversight and accountability, there simply aren't enough "mousetraps" to catch the gamers. (Source

GCHQ, the UK communications spying centre, has launched a code-breaking competition via social networks as part of a recruitment drive. The challenge, a visual code on a dedicated website, has been posted onto blogs, forums and social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter. "The target audience for this particular campaign is one that may not typically be attracted to traditional advertising methods and may be unaware that GCHQ is recruiting for these kinds of roles," a GCHQ spokesperson said. Once the code has been cracked, successful codebreakers will receive a keyword and an invitation to apply for a role at GCHQ's. (Source

The National Retail Federation estimates 40% of theft caused by shoplifting, organized crime and return fraud typically happens right now. "This year, the indicators we have seen year-to-date all show that retail crime has been on the rise. Organized retail crime, which is professional shoplifting and return fraud, where people return things back to the store, is up," said Joseph LaRocca, the NRF's Vice President Of Loss Prevention. "The shoplifting activity is consistent with last year so the number is very high." (Source

Dollar General 3Q report same store sales up 6.3% with revenue up 11.5%

Dollar Stores Now Outnumber National Drug Store Chains As of mid-year 2011, the combined store count of the four major dollar store chains – Dollar General, Dollar Tree, Family Dollar, and 99 Cents Only – has surpassed that of the three biggest national drugstore chains – Walgreens, CVS, and Rite Aid, according to a new study released today by Colliers International. The white paper, "Dollar Days: How Dollar Stores are Growing in a Weak Economy," notes that the rapid expansion of this segment is part of the larger lesson learned by retailers during the recent recession: consumers are looking for value. The four national chains – Dollar General, Dollar Tree, Family Dollar, and 99 Cents Only stores – now operate approximately 21,500 locations in the United States—more than the combined stores of the three biggest drugstore chains. Typical dollar stores occupy an average footprint of 7,000 to 10,000 square feet, although some newer prototypes exceed 20,000 square feet. (Source

$6 Billion in 'Cyber Week' U.S. Online Spending Sets New Weekly Record as Three Individual Days Surpass $1 Billion Threshold The most recent week saw three individual days eclipse $1 billion in spending, led by Cyber Monday, which became the heaviest online spending day on record at $1.25 billion. Tuesday, November 29 reached $1.12 billion, while Wednesday, November 30 reached $1.03 billion. These three billion dollar spending days currently rank as three of the four heaviest online spending days in history (with Cyber Monday 2010 being the other). (Source





Doug Marker
Vice President
LP, Risk and Audit
Michael Stores, Inc.

Stephen O'Keefe
Loss Prevention and
Risk Management
Wal-Mart Canada

Coming in December

Kelly Gorman
Vice President LP

LP Program Spotlight
eBay's PROACT Team



Richard C. Hollinger, PhD



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National Retail Federation
2011 ORC Survey

Executive Summary
Full Report 

National Retail Federation
Effective Crowd Management Guidelines

Education Awareness on Personal Safety
Full Report

Return Fraud Survey
Full Report

Asset Protection Conference

March 11-14, 2012
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Los Angeles Area
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February 16, 2012
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The Full Spectrum of LP

April 22-25, 2012
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eBay Investigation Leads to Federal Convictions

eBay & PayPal Global Asset Protection investigators provided extensive support and critical records to Federal law enforcement officials leading to the convictions of two suspects related to baggage thefts at airport. The two men have been sentenced to probation and ordered to pay more than $600 in restitution for stealing electronics from baggage they were handling at Bangor International Airport. In 2006 the pair stole digital cameras and other electronic items from luggage they handled while employed by Piedmont Airlines and then sold the items on the eBay. Prosecutors said Sproul and Mullen stole more than $5,000 worth of goods, but that many of the stolen items were recovered and returned to their owners. Click here for full article.

For further information on PROACT email inquiries to;

eBay Direct - Click Here  -  (notify - info - questions)


Toys R Us Organized Retail Crime efforts have been paying off In the fall of 2010, Toys R Us Investigations Team began tracking members of a South American Organized Retail Crime group, based out of Queens, New York suspected of stealing from several retailers. Over the next year, this group targeted TRU locations throughout the East Coast. The group was believed to be responsible for several thousand dollars of theft of children’s Educational Electronics hardware and software. Through coordination with law enforcement and other partner retailers TRU Investigations Team was able to identify multiple boosters groups and real time surveillance was initiated. Surveillance by TRU investigations teams yielded a number of arrests at TRU stores. Simultaneously, law enforcement had been tracking known vehicles used by these groups and police were able to identify other suspects involved. Over the course of 12 months, 8 total arrests were made for a case value of $143,000. Police were also able to take hardened criminals off the streets wanted for attempted murder, hit and run, eluding police, burglary and felony retail theft. This investigation demonstrates what can be accomplished by analyzing real time data (intelligence), cultivating retail loss prevention partnerships and communicating with law enforcement partners. Job well done by the Toys R Us ORC team led by Mark Shoemaker, National Director - Investigations.

5 charged in Walmart ORC ring in Utica, New York Five Utica residents have been charged after allegedly working together to shoplift more than $500 worth of merchandise from area Walmart stores Nov. 29. Robert I. Newton Jr., 44, of Park Avenue in Utica, William E. Devore Jr., 55, of Eagle Street in Utica, Christian L. Rex, 37, of Park Avenue in Utica, Donald Holmes, 48, of Lincoln Avenue in Utica and Robert L. Bell, 52, of Oswego Street in Utica, were charged with petty larceny and sixth-degree conspiracy for acting in consort in stealing the merchandise. Oneida City Police say more than $500 in merchandise was recovered after it was stolen from the Walmart in Oneida and additional merchandise was recovered that had been stolen from other area Walmart stores. The stolen items included various meat products, energy drinks, paper towels, pet food and other merchandise. (Source

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Job Opening




Loss Prevention Mgr Michael Kors East Rutherford, NJ Michael Kors
Manager, Business Continuity Winn-Dixie Jacksonville, FL Winn-Dixie

Corp LPM of Analytics & Exception Reporting



Downing & Downing

Director of Loss Prevention



Downing & Downing

National Account Sales Mgr


Chicago, IL

Downing & Downing

Asset Protection Manager

The Home Depot

Phoenix, AZ

The Home Depot

Asset Protection Manager The Home Depot Metro Northern NJ The Home Depot
Asset Protection Manager The Home Depot Sacramento, CA The Home Depot
Asset Protection Manager The Home Depot Salem, OR The Home Depot
Regional LP Director Confidential Los Angeles, CA Downing & Downing


Today's Daily Job Postings from the Net - Appearing Today Only

Job Opening




Loss Prevention Mgr Kmart Springfield, MO Sears Holdings Corp.
Loss Prevention Mgr Sears Savannah, GA Sears Holdings Corp.
Loss Prevention Mgr Sears Raleigh, NC Sears Holdings Corp.
Regional LP Mgr Forever 21 New York, NY Forever 21
Store LP and Safety Mgr Lowe's Turlock, CA Lowe's
Store LP and Safety Mgr Lowe's Westminster, MD Lowe's
Divisional LP Mgr Rent-A-Center San Francisco Bay, CA Rent-A-Center
Asset Protection Mgr Sam's G1 Jacksonville, FL Walmart
Market AP Mgr Walmart Shelby, MI Walmart
Loss Prevention Mgr Macy's Alton, IL Macy's


Thought Challenge Month in Review Starting today we'll be posting this years Thought Challenges, as they appeared, in a countdown to our Awards Committee's selection of the "Top 3". In addition we'll be enabling our readers to vote as well on the last day. Read well and make sure you vote!

Exception Based Reporting Revolution

Submitted by James Curtis, Director LP Analysis, CVS Caremark

March 30, 2011

Every so often, something comes along that can change the face of how you fundamentally conduct your business. Exception Based Reporting (EBR) was one of those items in the Loss Prevention industry. Gone are the days of sifting manually through receipts to identify problems. While that old style media still serves as an investigative bread crumb path and supporting documentation, the true power and starting point lies within the centralized database world.

Businesses used to rely on IT for their reporting. IT was slow to build new reports, and often they didn't show what you wanted. In the late 90's, several vendors developed proprietary models, that allowed LP professionals to take a typical information systems database and place a graphical user interface (GUI) over it. These vendors were smart enough to realize the opportunity to give non-technical people the power to create, run and analyze their own reporting through a user-friendly tool. This enabled the LP teams to transform their department from chasing leads to finding their own, driving industry shrink down and making EBR the buzz word for several years. EBR became mandatory software.

There is where the story usually ends. But for EBR, it is just the beginning --

With any successful first generation technology solution, people recognize the value, and champion that technology. Exception based reporting is no different. LP professionals became increasingly knowledgeable about databases and analytics. They pushed the vendors for functionality, and customization. Additional files were loaded and applications developed beyond what the vendors ever intended. LP became experts in their craft, and along the way started to outgrow the Vendors' tool.

It is no longer enough to simply summarize, sort/rank and threshold. The Holy Grail of an EBR system continues to be silver platter case identification.

A perfect example of this type of reporting:
• Take employee sales feed and identify employee credit cards
• Link those known employee cards to all refunds
• Identify returns where the refunding cashier is the same as the employee owner of the card

There have been attempts by vendors to introduce intelligence. Standard deviation was an attempt at this direction. Fundamentally, the core products, however, are not flexible enough to allow the LP professional widespread access to import, link and automate their own intelligence. Those systems lack the 'link through' ability to report results on one report, link to another report to narrow the scope, and finally land on a clean threshold driven summary of that relationship.

LP professionals have coped by creating band-aid reporting or manually massaging their data to produce this level of analysis. In an age where we are all asked to do more with less resources, automation of manual tasks will be critical to success.

Ripe is the opportunity now for recognizing the new business climate for a revolution in EBR technology. In a world where most businesses have Exception Based Reporting, a true second generation EBR tool will win our hearts -- and our dollars.


Wally Phillips was named District Loss Prevention Manager for Big Lots.
Gary Gravelyn was named
Regional Operations/Loss Prevention Manager for Orchard Supply Hardware.
Tim McCarthy was named Regional Loss Prevention Manager for Savers, Inc.
Sean Balducci was promoted to Regional Director of Loss Prevention for Kohl's Department Stores.
Richard Garcia was named District Loss Prevention Manager for Banana Republic.
Peter Lopata was promoted to
District Loss Prevention Manager for Gap Inc.
Shawn Decker was named District Safety Loss Prevention Mgr for Goodwill Industries of Northern California.
Kevin Griggs, CFI was named Regional Loss Prevention Manager for GNC.
Robert Zikowski was named Regional Investigator for Dollar General.
Denny Jenner was named Remote Operations Manager for Kohl's Department Store.
Felix Artemus was promoted to Regional General Manager for LensCrafters.
Aldo Lopez was named Regional Loss Prevention Manager for Central Parking Systems.
Edwin Adside was named Loss Prevention Consultant for HS Brands International.

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As Job Dissatisfaction Heats Up, Don't Let Your Company Lose The Game Of Musical Chairs If the surveys are correct, 2012 could go down in history as the year of corporate musical chairs. The results of recent studies conducted by Gallup, Mercer, and Right Management are alarming. Despite--or perhaps because of--the economic turmoil, discontent among workers remains high. There is still time to prevent your talent from walking out the door, but this will require a sharp turn in your organization. Here's what you've got to do. (Appreciated)

Goals: The Difference Between Success And Failure What do you think is the single most significant factor in determining the ultimate success or failure of your business? I’ll give you a hint -- it’s not how hard you work, how well you train your employees, or even how strong your cash flow is. Those are all critical factors, don’t get me wrong -- but even more important is your approach (or lack thereof) to goal setting. (Realistic)

Should I Use Email? There are two dangers you should always keep in mind when using email. The first is that email is not very good at conveying tone and nuance – and that seems to be doubly true when the sender is a manager and the receiver is a subordinate. Suggestions made in jest can too easily be mistaken for serious commands; observations made with irony can too often be received as literal. The second danger is one of excessive transparency. Email spreads like wildfire. We all know stories of people who wrote emails criticizing someone, and then mistakenly sent it to the person they were criticizing. Here's some simple rules. (Oh No)


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"Keep It Simple." What a phrase that we've all heard a million times and, quite frankly, most of us don't take it seriously enough. So many tend to over think and over do that, at times, we just don't get things done. Ken Blanchard said in one of his books that if you expect or even want perfection, you'll never get anything done. We all tend to over think and in our desire to do what's best, we can get lost in details and stand in the way of moving forward - most of which is as a result of just plainly not having enough confidence in one's self to just risk it and go for it. Hesitation is human nature and wanting to make sure you get things exactly perfect - well somebody's going to pass you by with the answer - that's simple, but brilliant. So keep it simple and have faith in the bird on your shoulder.

Just a thought,
Gus Downing

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