[hackerspaces] Do your spaces have a theft problem? How do you deal with it?

Tim Saylor tim.saylor at gmail.com
Wed Jul 20 16:23:14 CEST 2011

RFID and Cameras are the ideas on the table for us, though just treating
some webcams as security cameras won't work.  The camera that was taken was
plugged into the server rack and running.  We're sticking cameras on the
ceiling now.  We already have access points up there so it isn't too hard.

As for culture being a deterrent, I expect that's what's worked for us this
far.  However, we now have 90+ members and the directors and people who have
been around since the beginning can't possibly get to know everyone.  Do any
bigger spaces have some experience to share?

On Wed, Jul 20, 2011 at 8:54 AM, David Powell <davepow16 at gmail.com> wrote:

> At Harford Hackerspace we don't collect money for snacks and drinks. When
> we start running out of drinks we take turns buying more. Our space is
> monitored by several cameras and the space is owned by one of our members
> and he lives literally 20 feet away. I think what makes me comfortable about
> our members is knowing they all have good jobs. They may use tools and
> forget to put them back but they simply don't have a need to steal them. If
> I ever did suspect a member was stealing from us I would have to get to the
> bottom of it even if it were only $30 from petty cash. We only have 11
> members so I would ask each of them individually if they took the money just
> in case they took it to go purchase something for the space. If I knew when
> it happened I would look at the video archives to see who it could have
> possibly been.
> I just don't think it will ever be a problem for us because all of our
> members pay their dues. The stuff we own at the space was paid for by the
> members. We don't have any freeloaders. We make it well known that if you
> can't afford your dues then you simply tell us you can't pay them. We all
> know that people have rough financial times. We are all very good friends
> and would not have a problem asking to borrow money from another member.
> Everyone contributes equally and they all feel like the space is their own
> space.
> If someone is stealing from you then you need to do everything you can to
> find out who it is and put a stop to it.
> On Wed, Jul 20, 2011 at 9:32 AM, h0uz3 <h0uz3 at foto23.com> wrote:
>> Hi,
>> At shackspace we had a "open cashier" for a certain type of soda which was
>> completely removed by someone. We still don't know whether it was stolen
>> or
>> accidentially thrown away. Usually people miss personal things because
>> they
>> were used without their permission or stuff doesn't get back to where it
>> belongs.
>> For about a year we had a "open cashier" for sweets (vending machine for
>> sweets came in about 3 months ago, drinks were always in a vm), there were
>> slight differences between sweets "bought" and money "paid", but it didn'd
>> become a big issue.
>> --
>> Kein Footer.
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