The Essential Guide to Security for C-Store Franchises

The Essential Guide to Security for C-Store Franchises

Convenience stores have unique security needs because they’re open 24/7 and are largely cash-based businesses. One of the most significant security threats they face is robbery. Other crimes include shoplifting, internal theft, and fraud. These businesses are also different than other stores because they’re for quick shopping, and essentially one person can operate the whole store. One employee is convenient for shoppers but makes them an excellent target for criminals.

Traditional Convenience Stores vs Contemporary Convenience Store Operations

Convenience stores became more sophisticated in the 1970s. Previous stores were small, located in residential neighborhoods with a lot of people, and didn’t sell gas.

Security wasn’t a priority because the store hadn’t evolved into what it is today. It consisted of a floor safe, convex mirrors placed throughout the store, a hiding place under the counter for change such as a cigar box, and a manual cash register.

Today, most convenience stores sell gasoline, replaced food staples with high-profit snack food, have ATMs, sell large amounts of lottery tickets and phones cards, and have an enormous cash flow. They require a large fund for change to make it through one day. These changes have greatly increased security risks.

Over time security experts helped create programs that identified robbers and worked with law enforcement to get them arrested and off the street. A major study by the Western Behavioral Institute illustrated that robbers case stores and use a process to select stores to hit. Thieves looked at the money available, number of clerks working, escape routes, and witnesses to make their decisions. Making stores less attractive to criminals was a key solution.

Security Solutions for Today’s Convenience Stores

Managed video solutions address the many security threats that the modern convenience store faces. Video surveillance lets you watch all aspects of your business 24 hours a day. These solutions combine video and audio surveillance with vital POS data to create a fully integrated system that meets all of your security needs.

These systems provide real-time, actionable data that allows you to get a handle on internal crime as well as employee versus customer disputes. Video surveillance and panic alarms help protect employees and cover areas in the store, vulnerable to threats. They also provide valuable information to law enforcement to help identify suspects and investigate serious incidents.

The modern convenience store has evolved significantly from the mom and pop stores of the past. Advanced technology helps protect today’s convenience store’s assets and guards against a variety of crime in ways we never could before.


S-TRON is an electronic security integrator for national and regional retailers with thousands of installation locations and headquarters in Melville, New York. S-TRON provides outstanding customer service for national retail, grocery stores, restaurants, and C-stores.

Tina Dunn
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