Why your small business needs theft insurance

Theft costs Canadian retailers an estimated $5 billion[1] each year, according to the Retail Council of Canada (RCC) and it can greatly affect small businesses, including those in the retail segment. Whether you’re having tools stolen from your small landscaping operation or office supplies from your local professional services firm, the people you employ to help run your small business can sometimes be the ones stealing from you. On average, employees steal $2,500 in small increments over long periods of time while customers tend to steal about $175 each time.[2] And these are just the reported crimes. The RCC also estimates that approximately 500,000 employee thefts go undetected each year.[3]

Is your small business at risk?

Small businesses often can’t afford sophisticated alarms and monitoring systems to protect their inventories. This leaves them more at risk to internal and external theft than larger businesses. While larger companies can create dedicated loss prevention departments to limit the impact of employee theft, small businesses may decide they can’t afford to do this. If your small business relies on part-time or temporary workers, keep in mind that they may lack experience in accurately managing inventory or handling money. Both of these situations may result in misplaced inventory or funds.  

Protect your business against theft

Crime and property insurance can help you manage the losses your business experiences due to theft. The two main types of theft coverages for small businesses are fidelity insurance and theft insurance. These coverages can be a separate policy, or added as additional coverage to your property policy.

Fidelity insurance protects against employee theft of money, goods and equipment. Theft insurance, on the other hand, is available to add to your property policy and provides coverage under very specific circumstances, including, for example, the following:

  • theft of equipment from your business’s property
  • theft of merchandise or stock from an external storage location


Speak with your insurance broker today to find out if these crime and property insurance coverages are right for your business. If you don’t have an insurance broker, use our Find a Broker tool to find one in your area today.


Burke, D. (2017, February 16). A company’s most costly thieves already have keys to the building. CBC News. Retrieved from https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/nova-scotia/employee-theft-business-loss-money-1.3983773

Burke, D. (2019, April 13). Why retailers’ shoplifting fears are wrapped up in reusable bags. CBC News. Retrieved from https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/nova-scotia/shoplifting-theft-stores-retailers-reusable-bags-1.5093626

Organized retail crime. (n.d.). Calgary Police Service. Retrieved from http://www.calgary.ca/cps/Pages/Organized-Retail-Crime.aspx

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