Taking petty theft off the menu.

It’s summer and although an influx of tourists is great for local businesses there can be problems unless you are well prepared. Tourists in unfamiliar environments make easy victims for thieves and fraudsters. Tourists spend a lot of time eating and drinking out, so that’s where they may be victimized.

The guide from UCL’s Department of Security and Crime Science, “The Problem of Theft of Customers’ Personal Property in Cafés and Bars” by Shane Johnson, Kate Bowers, Lorraine Gamman, Loreen Mamerow and Anna Warne, describes 16 things you can do to ensure that customers have a happy and uneventful time.

The guide is divided into three main sections. The first section presents a general description of the problem of theft of customers’ personal property from cafes and bars, which has largely been overlooked in research literature. This section includes information on the extent of the problem, clearance rates and offenders, spatial concentration of the crime, harms caused by the thefts, and factors contributing to the problem.

The second section of the guide provides information to law enforcement officials understand the problem at the local level and to develop more effective response strategies.

The third section of the guide provides information on developing responses to the problem of theft of customers’ personal property from cafes and bars. Specific responses to the problem are presented in detail and include: improving opportunities for secure but convenient storage, raising awareness of risk and personal solutions, increasing guardianship and surveillance, and detection strategies.