How to reduce theft at self service checkouts

Regardless of technological advancements & security measures, self-checkout systems often found in supermarkets and convenience stores solely depend on the honesty of customers for scanning, and paying for their shopping.


In a recent study, it has been revealed one third of all customers “cheat” the self-checkout machines.

Some technological security measures built in to the self-checkout machine utilize scales in the bagging area. However, shoppers find these measures are easy to get around.


Shoppers carry out all kinds of tasks to cheat the self-checkout, including:

    Swapping barcodes on items

    Scan more expensive fruit & veg as lower cost varieties

    Avoid scanning an item all together and simply placing it on the floor in an already packed bag.


Emmeline Taylor is a criminologist and comments shopper’s attitudes toward supermarkets as massive corporations makes it okay to cheat the self-serve checkouts.


Others believe their actions are justified because they are forced to do the work of a checkout attendant, or that they’ve had to put up with problems in the checkout process and the mis-scanning of items is simply a mistake or accident.


Solutions to reduce theft and cheating at self-service checkouts include a simply login screen at the start of every self-checkout system’s sequence, where the shopper must agree to be honest and not cheat the system – research suggests this could play into the minds of the human psyche.


Another popular solution is to schedule a staff member to greet shoppers entering the self-checkout service area, reminding them they are there to help them.


The presence of the staff member can also act as a deterrent to shopper’s considering cheating the system.

GaP Solutions can tailor yourself serve checkouts how you want them, talk to us now about all your point of sale equipment needs