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Friday, March 18, 2005

FBI And Retailers Collaborate To Prevent Theft

The bureau is working with retailers to develop information-sharing networks and databases to cut down on organized theft.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation plans to work with the National Retail Federation to use technology to fight organized retail theft.  The recognition came at a hearing on organized retail theft held recently by the House Judiciary Committee’s Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, and Homeland Security.

The FBI’s first step in launching a formal Organized Retail Theft Initiative was the formation in 2004 of the National Retail Federation/FBI Intelligence Network, Swecker said.  The network is meant to increase collaboration among the FBI, state and local law enforcement, and retail corporate security to share intelligence, discuss trends, and identify and target potential problems related to theft.  “Organized retail theft isn’t petty shoplifting—it’s organized crime, and it has to be stopped.”

Also testifying at Thursday’s hearing was Chris Nelson, director of assets protection at Target Corp. NRF is a member of the Coalition Against Organized Retail Theft and arranged for Nelson to testify on behalf of the coalition.

Organized theft accounts for $30 billion in annual store-level losses, according to FBI numbers, and Nelson said items targeted for theft range from low-cost goods such as razor blades and batteries to high-end consumer electronics and designer clothing.;jsessionid=ASHSOZUL0AZH0QSNDBNSKH0CJUMEKJVN?articleID=159902300

Posted on 03/18