Security companies have noticed a new modus operandi referred to as scouting. Scouts work in shopping centres and survey the space for potential victims with apparent theft value. Scouts will pass information about the victim (what they’re wearing, the car they drive, etc.) to accomplices who follow the victim when they leave the shopping centre and strike when they’re vulnerable.
Being aware of scouts in the public space is vital. Knowing what to look for and then reporting it could be the reason a crime is prevented or a criminal (group) is brought to justice! Thanks to CAP for the following information.
What is a scout?
An individual who searches for an appropriate victim to target by surveying and gathering information and then passing this information onto their accomplices who are waiting nearby. The accomplices will then follow the victim and strike when the victim is vulnerable.
How to spot a scout
Scouts mostly operate in shopping centres. They appear to be your normal, everyday shopper. Scouts usually have the following characteristics:
* Extensive cell phone usage
* Carrying a basket/plastic bag – these are often empty or have very little inside – this is done to give the illusion that the scout is there to shop
* A scout will enter and leave the shopping centre at the same/similar time as you.
The Scout Operation
The scout will enter a shopping centre and begin scouting for a potential target – the potential target will have items of high value on their person. (For example: expensive watches or rings).
Once the scout has identified their target – they will proceed to discreetly follow the target around the shopping centre collecting information to hand over to the accomplices. (This includes – what the target is wearing, the vehicle they drive, etc.)
Once the victim leaves the business/shopping centre, the scout informs the accomplices to take over
What to do if you think you are being sourced?
Call CAP’s Command Centre on 0861 227 227 – our controllers are well equipped to assist with this type of criminal activity.
Find the nearest security guard.
Do not go home/to your next destination – rather drive to the nearest police station/public space.