LP Magazine

JAN-FEB 2018

LP magazine publishes articles for loss prevention, asset protection, and retail professionals covering shrinkage, investigations, shoplifting, internal theft, fraud, technology, best practices, and career development.

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POWER TO THE PEOPLE enforcement has been astonished at some of our results, especially with the quickness. Many cases are solved in a couple of days. In one case we went from posting a crime, to getting a tip, to apprehension by law enforcement in three hours," said Oberosler. He added, a smile notable in his voice, "It's fun to play offense." How It Works Solveacrime is premised upon two undeniable truths. First, if you can put information in front of enough people, you can extract something in return. Evidence of this abounds, most notably in crowdfunding platforms like Kickstarter and GoFundMe, where enough people gave enough tiny donations to fund a $13,000 inflatable replica of Lionel Ritchie's head and $18,633 for a griddle that imposes a pirate symbol into pancakes. The second truth is that crime is an endless source of fascination and/or concern. Be it community-watch members warning one other about a car break-in or throngs drawn to the latest television crime series or a James Patterson novel, the appetite for "whodunit" is endless. Solveacrime combines those forces—the power of social media and the insatiable interest in crime. "This is the first crowdsourcing, crime-solving system, which empowers people to upload incidents of crime to get help with solving them," according to Dario Brebric, president of Captis Intelligence, which operates the Solveacrime platform. Rite Aid pays a subscription to post crimes via Solveacrime. com. Out of the 2.8 million users registered to receive crime alerts, a crime posting is then sent out via email to individuals in the relevant geographic area. From there, it spreads. "Viral crime solving" is the company's pitch. It's like Crimestoppers, in that the goal is to solicit tips from the public to solve crimes. And it's akin to local news reports that ask for the public's help, but again, the scale is different, according to Brebric. "Local news might show one or two a broadcast, but what about the other 100 crimes? We can carry an unlimited number of videos, which reach hundreds of thousands of people daily. In a city like Los Angeles we can generate 250,000 views in one to two days," he said. Available services also go beyond the solicitation of crime tips, including information from analytics that monitor who looks at a crime posting, who they share it with, and comments that are made about a crime—the "chatter." "These all provide additional investigation points," explained Brebric. A client retailer can, for example, run a daily query to reveal every time someone had mentioned their store name in connection with any number of keywords, such as "robbery" or "drugs." Ultimately, Brebric suggests that harnessing the power of the public may help to alter the perception among criminals of the risks and rewards of retail crime, as well as the perception of retailers toward investigations and crime prevention. "Retailers have so many crimes that they normally would have to write off as 'we can't find this person,' but we can get them tips that lead to law enforcement apprehensions that they've never been able to have," said Brebric. "Retail has never before had a conduit providing them such a large crowdsourcing presence." Brebric sees the platform's value as being more fundamental then simply solving more cases of retail crime. He believes it provides a missing puzzle piece that has long plagued the asset protection industry. In his twenty years of experience developing enterprise security systems—for casinos, retail, and other large organizations—he has always "We're now closing over 50 percent of our violent crimes within a week. It has become one of the most interesting and quick successes that I have ever had with a new solution—and I've been in AP for forty years." – Robert Oberosler, Rite Aid 17 LP MAGAZINE | JANUARY–FEBRUARY 2018

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