Jewelers Mutual's safety tips for jewelers

Finally - the point has been made, I guess. I was sitting there
puttin a hinge on a watchcase thinking, “There must be some
guidelines out there…” The Jeweler’s Security Alliance website
will drive home the point that it’s not trivial, but Jeweler’s
Mutual had a page that at least gets the security ball rolling,
for those who need it:

Safety Checklist for your Store Everyday reminders

  • Inspect showcases several times daily for tampering.

  • Exercise proper key control: never leave keys on hooks or on
    counters, and use wrist key holders.

  • Keep showcases locked when unattended.

  • Show one item at a time.

  • Greet each customer who enters the store.

  • Always ask outside salespeople, delivery people, etc., for proper
    identification before doing business with them.

  • Use pre-established code words to alert other employees of
    suspicious situations.

Opening and closing guidelines

  • Observe your surroundings when you arrive.

  • Inspect the perimeter of the store for any signs of a possible

  • Open and close with two people; someone should watch from a safe
    distance and have a cellular phone.

  • As soon as you enter the business, relock the door.

  • With the doors locked, remove valuables from safes or vault to
    prepare for the work day.

  • Distribute high-value merchandise throughout the store in
    strategic areas away from entrances.

  • Never unlock your doors to anyone who is not an employee while you
    are preparing to open.

  • At the end of the business day and after customers have left, lock
    your doors before placing as much merchandise as possible in safes or

Safety tips for Goldsmiths, custom designers, repair jewelers and

When open to business

  • Remind your staff to ask salespeople, delivery salespeople, etc.,
    for proper identification before giving them entry to your business.

  • Train employees about how to respond during an armed robbery:
    cooperate completely, remain calm, strictly obey the robbers’

  • Before entrusting jewelry to another jewelry dealer or retailer on
    memo or as a sale contingent on approval, do a thorough background
    check. This should include a credit rating from the Jewelers Board
    of Trade, references, and a certificate of insurance. Have a written
    agreement about who is responsible for paying for shipping and

  • Avoid discussing jewelry business in public where others may hear
    you. Never discuss business with strangers or acquaintances who
    could use the against you.

  • Place fire extinguishers in easily accessible locations and
    maintain them as directed. Contact your local fire department for
    recommendations. Be sure all employees know where fire extinguishers
    are located and how to use them.

  • Assure that all flammable materials are stored correctly and
    containers are inspected as directed. Check your lease and local
    ordinances to determine any requirements or restrictions. Assure
    that employees who use the flammable materials are well trained.
    Train all employees about how to respond to an emergency.

  • Refer to Jewelers Mutual’s shipping flyer, The Safe Way to Ship
    Jewelry, for recommendations on how to properly ship jewelry.

When closed to business

  • Install a burglary-resistant safe/vault that is listed by
    Underwriters Laboratories (UL). The value of the merchandise you
    will store in the safe determines the quality of safe to purchase.

  • Store as much merchandise as possible in your safe or vault. Most
    nighttime losses involve jewelry left out of safes.

  • Consider using a safe-deposit box to store excess merchandise.

  • Install and maintain an alarm system that is listed by UL.

  • Make sure that your alarm system is maintained properly. Never
    take an alarm system for granted by assuming it is a false alarm. If
    your alarm system suddenly begins to malfunction, have the system
    checked by professionals. Don’t be satisfied until they determine
    exactly what is wrong.

  • Never reopen your doors (including to late-arriving customers)
    when you’ve closed to business.

  • If the police or alarm company call and ask you to come to your
    business for any reason, ask for the caller’s name and badge or ID

Preventing travel losses

General guidelines

  • The best crime prevention is to remain alert to your surroundings
    at all times!

  • Carry a line that is manageable. You must be able to carry all of
    it with you in one trip into a restaurant, hotel, or jewelry store.

  • Carry a cell phone with you at all times and use it to check in
    with your family or office, so they know where you are throughout
    the day.

  • Make travel arrangements very confidentially. Never use the name
    of the jewelry firm when making reservations and never use a
    postcard to make appointments. Never let others outside of your
    immediate family know where you will be staying.

  • When possible, do not take your line to your home. Store it at
    your company, a jewelry store, or in a bank vault. If you must bring
    your line home, take extra precautions to reduce your risks.

  • Keep a list of the inventory you are carrying in a safe place away
    from your line. The listing should be kept separate from your line
    to assure that it is available in the event that your line is

  • Check out prospective customers before calling on them or meeting
    them at an arranged location.

  • Direct all business correspondence to a post office box. Never
    direct business correspondence to your home.

  • Remember the value of the merchandise you’re carrying.
    Professional jewelry thieves are waiting for you to make one small
    mistake. Plan each trip carefully and follow your plan. Focus on
    maintaining possession of your line at all times. Assure that you
    have proper insurance coverage. If you are confronted by an armed
    robber, do as you are told and survive. Your line is not worth your

Traveling by car

  • Keep a directory handy (perhaps attached to your sun visor) with
    the emergency phone numbers of local police. Contact local
    authorities to determine whether 911 will work from your cell phone
    in that area.

  • When you leave a store, give the store manager your cell phone
    number and ask him or her to watch you leave or even walk you to
    your car. If the store manager sees a car follow you, he or she
    should call you immediately and notify the police that you may be a
    victim of an armed robbery.

  • Lock merchandise in the trunk of your car. Never leave it on a

  • If you are traveling by cab, keep your line in your possession,
    not in the trunk.

When flying

  • Arrive early so you have more time and choices.

  • Do not check your jewelry merchandise as baggage. Always keep your
    line in your possession, even if you have to reduce the amount of
    samples so that you can carry your line with you in a special case.
    Jewelry checked as baggage may not be covered by insurance.

  • At busy airports, contact security and request a private security
    screening. By law, you are entitled to a private screening of your
    carry-on baggage.

At a hotel or motel

  • Do not let merchandise out of your grip or physical control, even
    momentarily, when you take your line to and from your car.

  • Do not let your line out of your grip or physical control when
    checking in or out of a hotel.

  • Never leave your line in an unattended hotel or motel room, or the
    hotel security room. Take the line with you if you must leave the

  • Be cautious of people arriving unannounced at the door of your
    room. Do not open your door until you verify the person’s identity,
    such as with a phone call to the desk clerk. If suspicious, don’t
    open the door.

I’m happy to see that Hanuman expanded the article into the post,
for those who don’t click on links. Somebody on Kelley’s post
(starting jewelry repair business…) talked about scaremongers -
that’s fair, I’d say. Except that if you live in Smalltown your
repair business is going to be fairly limited. Just to scaremonger a
bit more, though, this is something everybody here needs to at least
be aware of - not fearful of, just aware of:

Just pay attention out there…

'Just to scaremonger a bit more, though, this is something everybody
here needs to at least be aware of - not fearful of, just aware of:

Good links, John, thank you. We had a call from the FBI on this last
summer, as a group was operating in our area. And our cities are not
even on the given list.

Remember that old poster from the sixties, with a little
Kilroy-was-here-kinda guy peeking over a wall? “Just because your
paranoid doesn’t mean they’re not out to get you…”