Don't call us a mall cop
This is a dangerous job
Every year, 50 to 100 American security officers are killed on duty. In 2015, nearly two thirds of those deaths were the result of assaults or other violent acts. (Here's an easy way you can burn calories in the mall.)
We aren't as powerful as police officers
Still, we have far less power than police officers. Most of us can’t arrest you, for example. We can detain you, but only if we witness you committing a misdemeanor or have hard proof you committed a felony. This is what police officers want you to know.
Sometimes we let shoplifters walk
Ask us questions
Extreme cases aside, on most days, we’re more concierges than cops. Customer service is a big part of the job, so go ahead and ask us where the food court is.
Got car trouble?
We can probably help you jump a dead battery or fix a flat. We can also drive you around or check surveillance video of the parking lot if you can’t find your car. One time, my supervisor even drove a stranded customer home. No tip necessary—or even allowed, most of the time.
Don't leave things on your car seat
Keep track of your kid
We spend a lot of time dealing with lost kids. Don’t send children under eight to get things from another part of the store or mall. They get distracted (and lost) easily.
Teach your kids to find us
Pro tip: Assure your kids that you’d never go to your car without them. You don’t want them to leave the mall and search for you in the parking lot. Teach your kids to ask an employee wearing a name tag if they need help finding you.