A typical store has more than a dozen cameras, motion detectors, infrared sensors and flood lights. Some even line the ceilings with tripwire to avoid rooftop burglars sawing their way in. At most dispensaries, no one gets in without passing by three doors, showing identification and presenting a doctor's note.
But that security is hard to maintain. Some store owners who use ADT, the nation's largest security provider, say the company has dropped them in recent months. ADT told CNNMoney it won't "sell security services to businesses engaged in the marijuana industry because it is still illegal under federal law."
Kevin Griffin, founder of West Coast Wellness, said ADT dropped him without warning in mid-April. He still has a silent panic alarm button Velcro-strapped beneath the front desk -- but it doesn't call anyone.
Griffin blasts ADT, saying, "They already knew what we were. We were completely transparent. It's not fair to put us in a jam and not give us any time to prepare."
The security needs create an opportunity for startups like Canna Security, a Colorado company currently expanding to Washington. It's founder, Daniel Williams, recalls the video cameras that catch footage of what pot stores and growers are up against.