Coronavirus: Security services see increased demand amid COVID-19 lockdown theft concerns

There's been a sharp increase in demand for security services with many business owners nervous about theft during the lockdown. 

Of particular concern is building sites, with many trade workers worried about their tools, after one already had his entire kit stolen in Auckland. 

Carpenter Jason Helsby had $14,000 worth of tools stolen on Tuesday night after he parked his vehicle

"Pretty much everything I need to get the job done at work [was stolen]. So a lot of money. And not just the money - some of those tools were gifts, some of them were prizes," he told Newshub.

He won them after taking out the Auckland Apprentice of the Year competition in 2019, and now he can't replace them until the lockdown is lifted.

"I think it's quite possible that this might not have happened if it weren't for recent events. I think people are scared," he said.

It's a concern shared by businesses across the country, with prospects of break-ins and looting.

Red Badge Security in Auckland lost almost half of its business overnight after events were cancelled, but it's now been overrun by calls from companies wanting to protect their closed shop front.

"In terms of demand we're seeing, we will need to probably add somewhere in the vicinity of 200 to 250 extra staff," Ben Wooding from Red Badge said.

Police say they've noticed a slight increase in call-outs and will have more frontline officers on the beat during the lockdown.

They say it is essential that people keep their doors locked and garages closed, and if you see anything suspicious to call 111.

The message remains to keep calm and stay at home. 

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