Base Exchange focuses on loss prevention

USAF: Airman 1st Class Alexxis Pons Abascal Cynthia Diverty, loss prevention manager, monitors the store’s surveillance system Feb. 10 at The Exchange at Cannon Air Force Base. The Exchange currently has 48 cameras installed and is awaiting 16 more by mid-March.

By Airman 1st Class Alexxis Pons Abascal: 27th SOW Public Affairs

The Base Exchange at Cannon Air Force Base has recently caught multiple individuals shoplifting by utilizing their extensive high-tech camera system.

“Shoplifting hurts everyone here at Cannon,” said Cynthia Diverty, Cannon AFB Exchange loss prevention manager. “Our security system helps protect our assets, from which proceeds get filtered directly back to the base.”

Local loss prevention personnel work to prevent these losses by increasing shoplifting awareness and letting customers know how seriously the offense is taken.

“Shoplifting results in a deducted return on investment to our primary shareholders,” said Diverty. People who steal from the Exchange don’t only harm themselves, but directly impact the morale, welfare and recreation program for the troops.”

In 2011, there were more than 5,400 cases of shoplifting in exchanges worldwide. The cost of stolen products was more than $530,000. These numbers have resulted in the expansion of electronic merchandise surveillance within exchange facilities.

“We currently have 48 cameras throughout the Exchange and surrounding the building, with 16 additional cameras set to be installed by mid-March,” said Jeffery Willis, Cannon AFB Exchange general manager. “We want our patrons to be aware that we protecting the benefits our Air Commandos receive from exchange sales.”

Once a shoplifter leaves the Exchange with stolen goods, they will be stopped and held legally responsible. A $200 civil recovery fee is automatically charged against shoplifters. If the stolen goods have been damaged in any way or cannot be resold, the shoplifter will also be charged the retail value of the damaged item. Service members can receive additional punishment under the Uniform Code of Military Justice.

“Our goal is to let our customers know we are making every effort to keep those who want to steal from doing so,” said Diverty.