Survey Shows How Much Shoppers Steal From Self-Checkout

We’ve been hearing how shoplifting is on the rise and new research reveals one source of it: self-checkout counters. According to a new Lending Tree survey of 2-thousand U.S. consumers, 15% of shoppers of all ages admit they’ve stolen items from self-checkout kiosks. But that number doubles to 31% for Gen Z consumers giving themselves a five-finger discount.

"Ultimately, retailers need to decide whether the self-checkout terminals are worth the risk," LendingTree chief credit analyst Matt Schulz says. "That's a question lots of retailers are likely wrestling with."

The survey also reveals:

  • While some with sticky fingers regret their thievery, 44% say they plan to continue stealing from self-checkouts.
  • That may be because it’s easy to get away with, as only a third who’ve done it have ever been caught.
  • But some folks are selective about what they’re willing to take, 37% say they’d only steal from self-checkouts to save money on groceries or health care products.
  • And it turns out, some people are shoplifting by mistake. While 79% of self-checkout users are diligently making sure each item gets scanned, 21% admit they’ve accidentally taken an item. But not all of them felt guilty enough to return it, as 61% say they kept the item they didn’t pay for.

Source: CBS News

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