Monday, March 20, 2023
HomeretailCheck it out: Technology makes UK a nation of thieves

Check it out: Technology makes UK a nation of thieves

The U.K. is being turned into a nation of thieves by the increasing number of self-service checkouts, a new survey indicates, with one in five Brits using the technology to steal from supermarkets.

Some £1.6 billion ($2.65 billion) worth of shopping is being stolen from self-service checkouts each year according to a research by the VoucherCodesPro website – and that's just in Britain.

Simon Dawson | Bloomberg | Getty Images

The number of self-service checkouts – which enable customers to scan and bag their own shopping – is certainly growing across the world.

(Read more: Wal-Mart tests local pickup option)

There were 26,800 shipments of self-checkout terminals globally in 2012, according to consulting firm RBR, which forecasts this number to come in at 35,400 for 2013, and reach nearly 60,000 by 2018.

But VoucherCodesPro's survey of 2,634 people found that almost 20 percent said they had stolen items via self-service checkouts in the past – and over half said they did so because they were less likely to be caught.

Some 57 percent said they were driven to stealing an item because it would not scan. According to the poll, the average person who does steal thieves £15 worth of products per month.

(Read more: Sainsbury's shares fall as King abdicates)

But despite the apparent ease with which shoppers are able to take advantage of the technology, lawyers were quick to point out that the act is still stealing.


Most Popular