Shoplifting is a significant problem for retailers in New Zealand. It’s estimated that shoplifting costs the country up to $750 million a year, which equates to over two million dollars a day.
However, thieves may have met their match, as Auror has just signed a deal with the New Zealand Police to make its technology available nationwide after successful tests were carried out with Canterbury and Counties Manukau Police.
"We have seen significant time savings in the incidents we process from retailers," Police deputy commissioner of operations Mike Clement says.
"On top of this, we have access to actionable intelligence on high-volume crime, enabling retailers and Police to better prevent crime."
Image (R-L): Mark Evans and Mike Clement from New Zealand Police, and Tom Batterbury and Phil Thomson from Auror
Auror has previously worked with major retailers in hundreds of stores across Australasia, from petrol stations to supermarkets to sports and homeware stores. It also has had the help of over 800 police officers to log, track and catch shoplifters.
The technology works by allowing retailers to log in online and report a theft in under 10 minutes by alerting local police and allowing direct reporting to the police crime reporting line.
Auror and Counties Manukau Police recently managed to identify an offender that was linked to over 44 incidents totalling over $25,000 across 18 stores.
The offender had over 20 associates and seven vehicles associated to him. He was sentenced and hasn’t reoffended since.
Another successful trial saw Canterbury Police arresting more than 130 people after hundreds of stores signed up and shared information on thefts.
Auror CEO Phil Thomson says the company has worked closely with the Police and retailers to see where it can improve the process of reporting and preventing crime.
“This agreement paves the way for a great partnership, allowing Auror to work closely with the New Zealand Police as a trusted partner to apply technology and innovation to help prevent and solve crime in real-time,” says Thomson.
Clement says the platform is being used to prioritise high-risk offenders and more effectively deploy Police resources to crime.
The crime fighting software is also being deployed across the ditch, with several pilots underway with Australian retailers. The company is also in discussions with Australian police.