Friday, 15 May 2015

Corporate Video Suveillance | What You Need to Know

Both large and small businesses recognize the importance of implementing video surveillance to protect employees, prevent theft and reduce risk of criminal break-ins. Video surveillance systems are relatively easy to install, however, you must consider privacy legislation to prevent potential litigation and ensure you’re following legislative privacy requirements such as those implemented under PIPEDA.

One of the first steps in protecting your business from litigation is implementing a Video Surveillance Policy and ensuring that all employees are aware of the system and its purpose. 

 Within your video surveillance policy, you should include:

· Purpose of the video surveillance system

· Where cameras will be used or not used

· Where the videos will be monitored

· Who will have access to the recordings and for what purpose

· Privacy procedures for requesting recordings

· Details and policies for archiving video footage

If your business is in the private sector, the privacy commission requires that your "… need to conduct video surveillance must be balanced with the individuals’ right to privacy, which includes the right lead their lives free from scrutiny. Given its inherent intrusiveness, organizations should consider all less privacy-invasive means of achieving the  same end before resorting to video surveillance."

Based on this requirement, the Privacy Commission has released a series of questions to help you decide whether or not you should implement corporate video surveillance. Check out their list below or view the entire article here.

10 things to do when considering, planning and using video surveillance

  1. Determine whether a less privacy-invasive alternative to video surveillance would meet your needs. 
  2. Establish the business reason for conducting video surveillance and use video surveillance only for that reason. 
  3. Develop a policy on the use of video surveillance. 
  4. Limit the use and viewing range of cameras as much as possible. 
  5. Inform the public that video surveillance is taking place. 
  6. Store any recorded images in a secure location, with limited access, and destroy them when they are no longer required for business purposes. 
  7. Be ready to answer questions from the public. Individuals have the right to know who is watching them and why, what information is being captured, and what is being done with recorded images. 
  8. Give individuals access to information about themselves. This includes video images. 
  9. Educate camera operators on the obligation to protect the privacy of individuals. 
  10. Periodically evaluate the need for video surveillance. 

We offer a variety of corporate surveillance services that will allow us to discreetly gather information and assist you in presenting unbiased facts and circumstances. We have a strict privacy policy in place, and can assist you in navigating your own privacy-related legislative requirements.

The Renwick Group has experience working with many different types of businesses and organizations providing skip-tracing, fraud investigations, WSIB support, legal team assistance, evidence gathering, employee background checks, and more. We also work with individuals who need help with personal matters. Call us at 1 (888) 722-9807 or visit our website for information.

Thursday, 23 April 2015

5 Simple Tips to Protect Yourself From Intellectual Property Theft and Fraud

Many businesses are at risk of property theft and fraud, causing huge losses in revenue.  Implementing some simple preventative measures can decrease your risk and protect your intellectual property and goods.

1.  The first step in protecting your business is installing a verified alarm system.  Verified alarm systems are different from traditional alarms because they verify the alarm for you.  You will not be dealing with false alarms in the middle of the night that require you to reset your alarm.  Verified alarm companies monitor audio or video security when the sound-based or motion-based alarms are tripped.  If a criminal is attempting to break-in to your business, they dispatch the police immediately.  Verified alarms receive prompt police response and result in criminal apprehensions.  If it is a false alarm, the monitoring station simply resets the alarm.

2.  The second step in protecting your business is a managed access control system.  This will help you monitor which employees access certain areas in your business and allows you to restrict access to certain hours of the day.  Additionally, a managed access control system restricts unauthorized persons from accessing your facility – without the proper key card access, they will be unable to enter.  Electronic key cards and fobs used with managed access control are also easy to disable – in the event that an employee no longer works at your business, it’s simple to remove their access.  This is a simple step you can take if you have a disgruntled employee who still has a key to your building.

3.  Criminal record checks are an important part of employee screening.  Your intellectual property is vulnerable to theft from outside criminals and also internal employees.  Reduce your risk by thoroughly screening employees prior to employment to identify any potential risk factors.

4.  If you’ve implemented a managed access system, you can take an extra step to protect intellectual property, client information or high-end products by limiting access to a specific office or server room.  Restrict access to managers or authorized persons to limit the amount of people who are able to access the room.

5.  Unsecured workstations increase your vulnerability to theft.  Secure your workstations, disable drives and protect your printers.  This will limit easy access to important internal information.  Securing your workstations will ensure the smash-and-grab criminal cannot remove a computer drive easily.  Disabling drives such as USB ports or other means of connecting external drives prevent employees from copying confidential data.  Protecting your printers reduces the chances of printer theft – printers often hold data in their on-board memory.

Implementing these five preventative security measures can considerably reduce your risk of theft.  Theft of intellectual property and confidential information can lead to many negative consequences for your business.  Make sure to take the steps to protect yourself from loss.

The Renwick Group has the knowledge and experience to help you or your business solve problems such as fraud, skip tracing, locating people, litigation support, labour dispute management, and more.. Please call us at 1 (888) 722-9807 to discuss your situation.

Saturday, 28 March 2015

Tips on Hiring a Private Investigator

People love detective stories and there have been many dramatic portrayals of Private Investigators in popular media. So when you find yourself needing to talk with someone about investigation services, you might think it's all cloak and dagger, but in reality it's a very professional, regulated, and customizable service.

Private investigators provide a broad range of services to personal and corporate clients.

Private Investigators are highly trained professionals with unique skill sets that assist you in gathering information for specific reasons. They are licensed and insured. They work closely with law enforcement and the legal community.

They know how to gather and protect evidence so that it is admissible in court. They are an independent third party professional not emotionally attached to your case.

There is a reason to hire lawyers, accountants and doctors. Private Investigators are professionals in the same right and in the proper circumstance they can be a valuable asset to your legal team.

 How do you hire a Private Investigator?

 So how do you go about choosing a private investigation agency that is right for your project? The following is a hiring guide published by the Council of Private Investigators - Ontario and you can download the full report here

 1. Go to the Council of Private Investigators - Ontario website, the yellow pages or search online for Agencies or Investigators who specialize in the type of investigation you require.
 2. Call your lawyer and ask for recommendations.
 3. Consult with a friend or acquaintance that may have been in similar circumstances.
 4. Identify three agencies local to you that provide the type of investigation services you require.
 5. Prepare a written list of questions you are going to ask each company.
 6. Confirm that the Private Investigation Companies or Private Investigators are licensed and insured.
 7. Check the company name and individual license number on the Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services.
a. Licensed Agencies
 b. Licensed Individuals
 8. Visit the agency office. It is required by law that all Private Investigation Agencies have a physical office address with a public entrance.
 9. The business licence to provide private investigation services should be clearly displayed in their office.  Request to see a copy of their certificate of insurance.
 10. Request to see a sample report format.
 11. Make an inquiry to the Better Business Bureau.
 12. Inquire about experience, education, training and length of time in the industry. What is their level of expertise in the areas of investigation you require?
 13. Ask for client references or letters of recommendation.
 14. If you retain a Private Investigation Agency insist on having a written receipt for any retainer/deposit you have provided and ask for the companies HST number.
 15. In most cases a Private Investigation Agency will require you to sign a contract or agreement. The agreement should clearly state what the investigation will entail, provide an estimated budget, identify a breakdown of the costs associated with the investigation and include a proposed timeline for completion. If progress payments are required clearly define the deliverables prior to signing the contract.
 16. Establish specific times when you will be updated about the investigation. Define if the updates are to be written or verbal.
17. Define the deliverables you will receive after the investigation is completed. Reputable Private Investigation.  Agencies will provide a full written report with details of the investigation, the time spent on investigation tasks (such as surveillance), and a detailed invoice itemizing costs associated with all phases of the investigation.

The Renwick Group is a private investigation firm founded in 1997 and is based in Barrie, Ontario. We excel in delivering our core Private Investigation Services in the most efficient, secure, and professional manner.​


The Renwick Group has the knowledge and experience to help you or your business solve problems such as fraud, skip tracing, locating people, litigation support, labour dispute management, and more..  Please call us at 1 (888) 722-9807 to discuss your situation.

Saturday, 21 February 2015

Background Checks – Employee Screening or Online Dating?

Background Checks are no longer limited to employment screening. In fact, there is a growing trend of background checks conducted for online daters. With one-in-five adults ages 25-34 years using online dating to find that special someone (Pew Research), it’s becoming more and more common for online daters to conduct a background search on their potential new partner.

While online dating sites have implemented rules to help prevent emotional, physical or financial hardships, conducting your own background check can add an extra measure of protection against any scammers and ensure your personal safety.

The Better Business Bureau received more than 4,000 complaints regarding dating sites in 2014, some of which were related to scams. And with the growing trend in online dating, the potential for scammers and dishonestly online will continue to grow.

Background checks can identify dishonest online daters by revealing:

  • True identity 
  • Marital status 
  • Criminal records and convictions
  • Financial history
  • Undisclosed debt
  • Hidden addictions
  • False profile information 

You can expect a certain level of dishonestly in most online dating profiles – after all, the dating profile is more like a personal advertisement than a true reflection of personality. That being said, hiding criminal convictions and marital status are key pieces of information that could influence your dating decisions.

While the most common motivation for a background check is fear of getting hurt in a new relationship, it can also help weed out any potential partners that don’t fit in with your long-term plans. Once you make a connection, take the time to get to know each other before meeting. And when you do meet, protect yourself by meeting in a public place rather than somewhere secluded. Following a few dates, you can make the decision on whether or not to conduct a background check.

The Renwick Group offers flexible, comprehensive background check services to our clients.

Click here to learn more or contact us for more information.

The Renwick Group is Canada’s leading Private Investigation Company specializing in Skip Tracing – we locate hidden assets, people, missing autos & boats, witnesses, beneficiaries, property and missing persons.