Human intelligence gathering
You are used to gathering data from a plethora of reports, but what about human intelligence gathering?
Interviewing people who are stealing merchandise, information, credit card data, etc., and then using it to sell to fencing locations, resell merchandise, and ultimately perform a fairly organised form of criminal activity can be a challenge. Overcoming the intelligence gathering challenges and developing informants within organised retail crime rings can be achieved with a non-confrontational strategy.
Conducting a thorough interview is essential to closing these external cases. Make sure you’re asking the questions in the proper context. Make sure you’re still listening for qualifiers in any statement. Most importantly, focus on finding reliable information and developing information with substantiation. Figure out not only why they came to your location today, but how many times they have been there.
How many other locations have they been to? Where do they get their orders from? How many people are they with? Who taught them how to steal? What’s their goal for taking merchandise from you? Where are they selling it? How are they selling it? How long have they been selling it?
It’s amazing how a great interview plays such a vital role in closing out an organised retail crime case. So, don’t forget your skills and training when it comes to those types of interviews.