Service Theft Resource Center
2007 the cable industry lost $12 billion¹ of its $75.2
billion² in residential revenue to cable thieves. That's
16% of revenues! Service theft is a serious issue that impacts
cable operators of all sizes.
like most cable operators, you don't have an aggressive strategy
to address the problem. The good news is that you can cost effectively
reduce and prevent service theft, and this resource center is
designed to get you started.
that our recommendations can make a difference? Read Buckeye
CableSystem's case study. Secure Signals efforts yielded
a 3.75% increase in subscribers and $3.1 million in revenue
for Buckeye CableSystem in 2007.
to Reduce & Prevent Cable Theft
IP Service Theft
a Firm to Reduce Theft
Know the Law
state has laws, the federal guideline is often preferred because
it has more stringent penalties than many state laws. The 1984
Cable Act provides damages and penalties of up to two years in
prison and/or $10,000 in fines to be assessed against anyone determined
to be guilty of cable theft and/or provisions for actual damages.
an audit to identify unauthorized users, gauge the scope of
the problem, and assess how much cable theft is costing your
company. Its ideal to have an independent party conduct
the audit, but if that is not feasible, have your techs conduct
a blind audit during every service call.
A blind audit simply
consists of the tech noting whether or not the neighbor on each
side of the service call residence is connected to your cable
network. The daily report of blind audits are submitted to the
office and someone verifies whether or not the neighbors are
conduct random QC checks in the field to ensure technicians
are following protocol, connecting disconnects as ordered, and
not promoting service theft. The adage people do what
you inspect, rather than what you expect holds true. Read
installing a theft
prevention unit at the tap during audits.
pursue restitution from cable thieves. If you know someone is
stealing service, take action. A lack of response is likely
to encourage more theft as the thief tells others hes
able to receive service free of charge. A good first step is
to simply send a letter to the pirate seeking restitution. The
goal of the letter is to get the pirate to call a designated
person to discuss the situation. Youll want to ensure
the person fielding the calls is properly trained to appropriately
manage the call and obtain the desired result: converting the
pirate into a paying customer. You want to avoid motivating
the pirate to turn to your competition for paid service.
a sample letter.
to your customers and the community that your company is serious
about cable theft, that cable theft is a crime that negatively
affects paying customers, and encourage the anonymous reporting
of suspected cable theft through a toll free phone call or
here to view a sample bill stuffer.
check out the green box on the right for a free FAQ page you
can customize and post on your Website.
Advanced network monitoring technologies are now available to
silently identify theft of DTV, PPV, and IP services. Read the
News article for details.
president and CEO of Buckeye CableSystem, shares the criteria
he used to select Secure Signals in this insightful Q&A