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Spa MD: Protecting Your Business Assets
By Camille Hoheb
Posted: July 19, 2007, from the August 2007 issue of Skin Inc. magazine.
page 2 of 3
An owner can’t afford to overlook the security of the medical spa, its staff, clients and property. Security addresses the ways you can protect your business from burglary, theft and other types of crime. There are many simple precautionary measures—alarm systems, adequate lighting and lock-and-key controls—that are simple, yet effective, security measures.
If you think there is a low likelihood that a burglar might make off with your property, think again. Here’s another true and unfortunate situation involving a medical spa whose computer system was stolen—not once, not twice, but three times! The third time, the computer was stolen by knocking down a wall and thus avoiding the newly installed burglar system. You can imagine the resulting impact.
PRM Global, LLC, a company specializing in protection risk management, devised a series of hypothetical questions you should ask as medical spa owner.
- What would be the impact on your medical spa if your client data or personal information was lost or stolen?
- What would be the impact on your medical spa if your equipment were stolen?
- What would be the cost in downtime while obtaining and waiting for replacement equipment, even if insured?
- What would be the effects of your clients feeling “more vulnerable” because your medical spa was victimized by crime?
- What is your liability if reasonable means were not taken to protect your customers?
All business expenditures, including security, must be justified on a cost/benefit basis. PRM Global offers the following suggestions.
Professional and free security advice. Many local law enforcement agencies have officers who will come to your medical spa and conduct a security vulnerability study to advise the best proactive measures for your specific business and location. Private security companies are also available for this type of service. You may have to determine what is actually “needed”, as opposed to “nice to have,” and it is therefore recommended that you obtain advice and bids from at least three reputable local security companies before making your decision.
Effective lighting. Indoor and outdoor lighting is one of the least expensive, but most effective, criminal deterrents. Darkness communicates no activity and assists in the concealment of burglars and their actions. Make sure all entrances and parking areas are adequately illuminated, as well as other high-risk and criminal prone areas.
Monitoring systems. Video surveillance systems are strong deterrents, as are intrusion detection systems, such as burglar alarms. The cost of video surveillance continues to decline as its effectiveness increases. If your medical spa is victimized by crime, an effective video surveillance system will aid in the apprehension of the perpetrators and recovery of your stolen assets. PRM Global recommends a video surveillance system installed by a reputable local vendor who will ensure at minimum that you have dependable surveillance record capability. Make sure to post surveillance, alarm and armed patrol signs or stickers on access points, such as doors, windows, delivery or cargo areas and parking areas.