The reason most retailers use clothing security tags and retail anti theft devices like the ones manufactured by Checkpoint Systems, is not to actually catch shoplifters. The idea is to prevent the shoplifter from choosing the store that uses such a device as the place to practice his hobby of shoplifting.
The fact is, retailers had far rather prevent shoplifting that detect it. The cost in time and money in actually catching, detaining, and prosecuting a shoplifter can be high. So high in fact that some shop owners choose not to bother with shoplifters that steal merchandise valued at below a predetermined amount.
A major retailer implemented this policy several years ago and let the information be public. After several months of being plagued by shoplifters who could do math and who were assured that they would not be prosecuted, the retailer dropped the ill-advised policy.
The costs involve downtime for store personnel, non productive hours taking off work to get warrants, make complaints, or testify in court.
Its much more economical to save lost inventory, save lost time, and save lost money by putting clothing security systems to work guarding the merchandise and forcing the shoplifter into making a couple of decisions. The first decision is whether to steal in a store where there is a good chance of being detected because of clothing security tags, or to go ahead and buy the item. The second is that if they do decide to steal, do they do it in a store protected by a clothing alarm, or do they move on to an easier target – another store down the street.
And if the shoplifter makes a poor decision and decides to take the merchandise in spite of the clothing security tags attached to it, the Checkpoint Systems electronic article surveillance at the door will sound the alarm as the merchandise passes by it, attracting plenty of unwanted attention.
Clothing security protects a retailer’s valuable investment in both inventory and payroll, and allows legitimate shoppers to browse unhindered by merchandise that is locked behind a display case or attached to a rack by cables.