Practical Information to
Combat Organized Retail Crime Presented at North Carolina ORC Conference
By Rod Holm, Vice President, Global
Sales, Service and Business Development, Universal Surveillance Systems
A panel of experts in the field of organized retail
crime (ORC) presented the latest strategies and techniques at the ORC
Conference held in Charlotte, NC, on October 7, 2011, and sponsored by
Universal Surveillance Systems (USS) and Belk Department Stores.
The following speakers presented valuable information at the free,
Lauren Cunningham, Senior Investigator, Global Asset Protection, for
eBay, Inc. discussed how the popular online auction site has taken
several proactive measures to prevent the sale of stolen property being
listed on eBay. eBay partners with retail loss prevention and law
enforcement to combat organized retail crime.
Chad Tice, Vice President of Loss Prevention and Security for
Books-A-Million, presented a concerted plan to defeat potential
legislation in Alabama that would have been detrimental to LP and public
safety and was ultimately defeated. He stressed the importance of
monitoring legislation and, if necessary, opposing it through committee
hearing public testimonies which should be carefully prepared and
Rick Glay, Director of Loss Prevention for Bi-Lo Supermarkets, talked
about the importance of open communication and partnership between LP
staff and local law enforcement, especially when suspects are
Bill Suthard, Senior Corporate Investigator at Barnes and Noble, Inc.,
covered the unique ways the company obtains information to bolster their
LP investigations both for in-store thefts and for stolen goods sold
Harold Hodnett, Director of Loss Prevention for Kerr Drug, provided
pointers on legislative analysis and action and urged attendees to watch
for proposed legislation that would reduce the prison population by
simply redefining crime categories, changing crime thresholds or
altering sentencing guidelines.
Sergeant Brian Foley of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department said
that his department is seeing shoplifters becoming more and more
organized and sophisticated and urged retailers to work as closely as
possible with local law enforcement agencies.
Robert Vranek and Matt Senn of Belk Department Stores discussed their
video monitoring system at their corporate office to combat ORC at
smaller stores that cannot justify LP staff. The sophisticated system
has resulted in a significant decrease in inventory shrinkage at
Rory O'Connell, Investigations Team Leader at Target, covered their
aggressive techniques to combat ORC and efforts to educate law
enforcement personnel about ORC.
Rod Holm from USS reviewed evolving technology being used by ORC
operatives and methods to counter them. The newest threat is the EAS
jamming device, which is activated by an accomplice outside the store
within 15 feet of the exit to jam the EAS detection system and allow the
shoplifter to exit the store without detection. He discussed new
technology to detect those devices.
Kevin Morrison, manager of corporate investigations and organized retail
crime at Lowe's, focused on theft utilizing fraudulently obtained gift
cards that are sold online and ways to combat those activities.
USS sponsors four ORC conferences in different parts of the county
throughout the year where experts in the field offer proven solutions in
combatting ORC. There is no charge to attend. Contact USS at
1-800-488-9097 or go to
www.retailorc.org for more information.