Here's one way to catch a thief. After suffering the loss of millions in a massive security hack several years ago, Framingham, Mass. discounter TJX Cos. has hired company investigators to find people suspected of organized retail crime by following them to homes, pawn shops, and other locations, and monitoring their activity by surveillance.
According to The Boston Globe, organized retail crime typically involves individuals working together to steal goods from stores. The merchandise is often sold online or returned to stores for cash or taken to pawn shops. Or, as in the case of TJX, which runs chains like T.J. Maxx and Marshalls, tens of millions of credit card numbers may be stolen by hacking into a store's computer network.
Now TJX is taking serious efforts to ensure that never happens again. In addition to their 52 investigators spread across the United States and remote teams reserved for communities suspected of activity, the company is also conducting reverse stings and using other proactive strategies as part of a national effort to shut down increasingly sophisticated criminal groups, Eliot J. Green, TJX’s national investigations director, said. The company said that whenever possible, it will work with law enforcement officials to bring charges and prosecute cases.
“You don’t want to just catch one cell. . . . You have to work your way up the organization to take out the head of the snake,’’ Green said. “We do controlled buys, stings — really anything that is legal but also ethical.’’ Merchants across the country have been devoting more resources to tackling large-scale criminal activity, which results in losses of between $15 billion and $30 billion a year. People like Green, who served as chief of the Massachusetts attorney general’s Insurance and Unemployment Fraud Division before joining TJX, hope that while these efforts are a step in the right direction, even more must be done before making a dent in organized retail crime. “If we recover $10,000 in a case or $100,000, it’s nice, but is that going to stop the activity?’’ Green said. Perhaps 2011 is the year where that can finally happen.
Article Source: The Boston Globe
Photo Source: news.in.msn.com
Tags: activity, Alia Rajput, charges, credit card, crime, Eliot J. Green. law, enforcement, goods, hack, investigators, legal, Marshalls, numbers, prosecute, retail, retail detail, security, steal, stores, surveillance, T.J. Maxx, TJX Cos.