An annual report from the National Retail Federation (NRF) found that 67 percent of retailers reported an increase in retail crime along with 40 percent who were victims of cargo theft at some point in the supply chain.
Organized retail crime is on the rise, according to the NRF.
Organized retail crime (ORC) continues to be a growing problem, according to an annual survey compiled by the National Retail Federation (NRF).
The 13th annual ORC survey found that 67 percent of retailers reported an increase in the past year, with losses averaging $726,351 per $1 billion in sales, up from $700,259 in 2016. It also found that 40 percent of retailers were the victims of cargo theft, with merchandise being stolen on its way from distribution centers to stores or elsewhere along the supply chain. However, that number is down from 44 percent last year.
“Organized retail crime continues to be one of the biggest challenges to retailers of all sizes,” said NRF Vice President for Loss Prevention Bob Moraca. “These crimes happen across the country every day, with criminals getting smarter, more brazen, more aggressive and sometimes even attacking store employees and shoppers. Fighting ORC is a full-time job, and retailers must learn how to stay a step ahead of these thieves.”
The NRF noted that Los Angeles continues to be the hardest-hit area since 2012 for ORC in the nation, followed by New York City, Houston, Miami, Atlanta, Chicago, Orlando, San Francisco/Oakland, Orange County, Calif., and Northern New Jersey.
A similar recent report conducted by supply chain risk assessment firm Sensitech revealed that the U.S. is considered a high risk region for organized cargo theft, as crime groups are organized and sophisticated.
According to the report, “theft of full truckloads of cargo accounts for about three quarters of all theft in the United States, other methods of theft are gaining in popularity, according to the SCIC, specifically pilferage of electronics and pharmaceuticals, where smaller volumes of product theft can still be profitable.” The report concedes that the greater Los Angeles area is the “most severe hotspot” for cargo theft in the U.S.