Shop owner posts request for professional thief to ‘rob’ store – can you help?

Letting someone deliberately steal things from you might seem like a strange decision, but for one desperate store owner, this request could save thousands of pounds.

An owner of an independent store in Greater London has posted a ‘Bark’ looking for a ‘professional thief’ to rob her store in an effort to test her security systems and the diligence of her staff.

While this isn’t a service we normally provide, we’re hoping that one of our security professionals will be able to help her out.

She has asked to remain anonymous, however she has agreed to let us make the Bark public to help find the right person for the job. Here is the request in full:

I’m looking for a professional to help highlight security weaknesses in my store, by deliberately stealing from it.

I’ve been a business owner since I opened my retail shop in 2013, and have experienced extensive theft every year in the run-up to Christmas for the last five years.

Like clockwork, from the start of November, the shop gets busier and it becomes harder to monitor everyone who comes through the door. Thieves swipe items from our shelves and I’m losing thousands of pounds every year and, as a small business owner, I can’t afford to let this slide.

I’m thinking that I need to re-evaluate how my shop is designed, and where I have CCTV cameras, because currently we’re unable to catch any thieves in the act. To help I’m looking to hire someone to come in and try to steal from my shop deliberately, and then feedback where we’re going wrong on the security front.

I would like to hire someone as soon as possible to carry out the mock ‘theft’, and am willing to pay up to £50 an hour for the right person. As an added bonus, whoever is chosen will be able to keep 3 items they successfully steal without being caught.

I’ll need you to come in beforehand and visit the shop on different dates/times over several weeks. After the ‘thefts’ I’ll also need a detailed report of how they were carried out, whether you were approached or questioned by any members of staff, any blind spots in the CCTV coverage and any other security weaknesses.

Obviously, I don’t want anyone with a criminal record having this kind of access to my store, so a full background check will be conducted. Experience in a security profession is also required.

It’s an odd request, but I’m determined to find weaknesses that I may not have spotted before. If you can help or think you can help me improve the security of my store, please let me know.


Do you think you can help this shop owner out? If you answered yes, then sign up here:

Here’s what our co-founder, Kai Feller had to say:

“Retail theft can have a devastating impact on small businesses, costing retailers more than £700 million in 2017. Increased footfall during the festive shopping period often leads to a spike in thefts. So, when you consider that this store owner is losing thousands of pounds every year due to Christmas thefts, it’s not surprising that she is taking this step to find out how she can improve the security of her store.

“While we do have a variety of security professionals already on our site, professional robbery isn’t a service we actively offer. However, we hope that someone with the right skills and know-how is willing to help this store owner better secure her shop. Who knows, if we have a significant number of applications perhaps this can become a permanent service on!”

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