Restaurant Security – Know Your Risks

Every business faces security threats in their day-to-day operation, but many people don’t realize how vulnerable restaurants are to crime. In recent months, a wave of crime has hit restaurants across Canada. In Alberta, a Beltline Restaurant has been repeatedly targeted by thieves. A Vaughan, Ontario restaurant has seen two separate shootings in 2021, while a ‘significant’ amount of money was stolen from a Burnaby, BC restaurant just last month.

Restaurants Face Many Security Challenges

Alongside the challenges they’ve faced throughout the pandemic, restaurants face a unique set of risks that compromise the security of staff, guests and property. These risk factors include:

  • Late night opening hours
  • Large amounts of cash kept on site
  • Increasingly high staff turnover levels
  • Less time to background check new hires
  • The consumption of alcohol at most restaurants

Ultimately, restaurant owners hold legal liabilities for many of these risks. Despite this fact, many don’t employ any additional restaurant security to mitigate this risk. It’s critical to understand the risk inherent in the restaurant industry, as well as effective strategies to reduce your liabilities.

Employee Theft

Here are some sobering figures for restaurant owners. The US National Restaurant Association estimates restaurants lose approximately 4 per cent of their revenue to in-house theft each year. Statistics Canada indicates the average profit margin for Canadian restaurants is just 4.4 per cent of operating revenue. Many Canadian restaurants are seeing their entire operating profit walk out the door in employee theft.


Alongside the threat from in-house theft, restaurants are particularly vulnerable to robbery. Criminals know restaurants carry a lot of cash, they open late hours allowing criminals to operate under cover of darkness, and employees are usually busy dealing with diners. After closing, most employees head home, leaving management to close off accounts after hours and complete inventory checks. This represents a particularly vulnerable time for establishments.

COVID Flashpoints

Most Canadian provinces have brought in a vaccine passport program that prevents unvaccinated individuals from dining inside restaurants. This move has placed additional risk on employees who check these passes, and incidents have been reported nationwide of individuals taking out their frustrations on frontline workers. With the trauma many in the restaurant industry have dealt with throughout the pandemic already, this simply isn’t ok.

Restaurant Security – How Blackbird Security Can Help

With these facts in mind, it’s time restaurant owners took their security responsibilities more seriously. At Blackbird Security, our experienced team of frontline security guards know the unique threats faced by this industry. We can provide industry leading restaurant security options to suit all sizes and budgets.

We understand that each restaurant is different, and represents a unique set of security challenges. That’s why we meet with each new client to develop an understanding of their neighbourhood, challenges and security issues, before devising a tailored security plan that maximizes their coverage and remains respectful of their budget.

Our common restaurant security services include:

Request a Quote

If you’re a restaurant owner and you’re interested in hearing more about Blackbird Security’s industry leading range of restaurant security services, we’d love to hear from you! Contact Us and get started on a more secure future.

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