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How to Stay Safe at Jewelry Trade Shows

Berkley Asset Protection offers tips for exhibitors and attendees.




WITH TRADE SHOWS, events and conferences returning in-person after a pandemic hiatus, it is imperative that attendees and exhibitors be ready and prepared for potential safety and loss risks that can occur at large gatherings.

Exhibitor Precautions

• Be aware of your inventory values and assure that you are carrying sufficient insurance limits for your business at the show.
• Despite the hustle and bustle, always be alert and follow security procedures when transporting jewelry to and from your booth.
• Always ship high valuable product through armored services.
• Don’t assume that just because there is trade show security, you’re protected from theft. Anyone in charge of the booth is also in charge of security. Make sure all members of your staff understand that part of their role is being vigilant to ensure the booth and products stay secure.
• Make sure your booth is properly staffed during show hours.
• Keep valuables in locked showcases. Keep the keys in a secure spot, and never leave keys on a counter or in a place they could easily be snatched.
• For high value pieces show only one at a time and inspect every piece before returning to the showcase.
• Keep jewelry trays and displays fully stocked so it is easy to identify if a piece is missing.
• If possible, utilize safes and guarded storage areas.
• Don’t leave personal items, electronics and other valuables in booth overnight.
• Only show product to attendees that have identified themselves and businesses, especially if they are wearing a mask or face covering. It’s wise to ask for identification and also take a picture of the badge or use the QR scanner, if available. This also helps with sales follow up in addition to security.
• Be vigilant for signs that someone is casing your booth to commit theft, e.g., a visitor without visible badge credentials, who fidgets, avoids eye contact, wears a large hat or face coverings or seems like they are trying to distract you.
• Review your internal plan for potential thefts. Make sure all employees know a predetermined phrase that alerts them to a potential threat without alarming customers. Employees should know the proper steps to take when the code phrase is used. Practice this before and during the trade show events.
• Never show product in an unsecured location like a hotel room or public place during a business meeting.

Personal Safety

• Only wear badges on the show floor, at events organized by the trade show operator and at private events related to the show. Always remove your badge when leaving the show floor and events.
• Don’t advertise your exact location, room number or anything that could compromise your safety.
• Don’t share that you work with high-valuable merchandise especially to strangers such as service workers, other hotel guests or staff, taxi drivers, etc.
• Even if you are not carrying or wearing merchandise, be cautious about carrying any swag or marketing collateral that could make it obvious for a criminal that you work
with jewelry or other high value merchandise.
• Be on alert when returning to your hotel room that you are not being followed. Contact hotel security immediately, if you feel unsafe.

If you see or suspect any suspicious activity – always alert show organizers, security and any onsite law enforcement.

For additional Loss Control tips, click here.

If you have questions, contact Berkley Asset Protection: 212-922-0659 or [email protected].


Greg Smith is executive vice-president and co-founder of Berkley Asset Protection, a Berkley Company (WRB). He leads the claims and loss consulting operation for the company’s jewelers block, fine art, high-value assets and commercial lines practices. He started his career in the claims adjusting and loss consulting business in 1987. Reach him at [email protected] or learn more about Berkley Asset Protection at



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