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Strange Store Security messures? (1 Viewer)

DeathStar1

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Neil
I guess I can understand big stores. Normally when you buy somehing big at places like Comp USA, they'll ask for your receit and check to see if everything is in order. But why would a smaller store ask for your address and phone number?
For instance, went into Radio Shack to get a simple 9 hour tape, and I Had to give out my whole address out once again. I went into the BookNook(Local Bookstore, non chain), and they asked for my phone number only. All I did was buy Attack of the Clones and the Michael J Fox Autobio...
Anyone know the reasoning behind this? I'm curious :). Now it's off to install my newly arrived TV Tuner.
Thanks!
 

Philip_G

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rat shack wants your info to send you crap in the mail. Just tell them no an they usually say "OK"
 

Jay H

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Concerning Radio Shack, they say it's for Marketing reasons (i.e. they can send you a flyer). In fact, I was in RS one day when this lady who apprently got something as a gift and was returning or exchanging it was in a heated argument with an employee cause she had to give her address to the guys. She was very very irate and adamant about not giving it to them and while I was browsing was hearing this go back and forth and stuff. Eventually I think she caved in but left in a big huff...

Some people just ask for your zip code, I think Staples does that sometimes..

Jay
 

Malcolm R

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Some will ask for your zip code so they can determine where their customers come from and can target their advertising/marketing accordingly. I've done the Rat Shack thing, very odd. Don't know why anyone would need your phone number unless they're planning to telemarket to you in the future. As DennisHP said, give 'em bogus info. I usually just rattle off some random numbers.
 

Ron-P

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Why even bother with bogus info? Just tell them you do not give out personal info.
Peace Out~:D
 

Leila Dougan

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Don't even get me started on Radio Shack. I hate them with a passion. The ones in my area won't accept an answer of "NO" when they ask for your address. I think its completely unreasonable to expect someone to give out tons of information when they purchase a $5 battery. I refuse to shop at Radio Shack completely now (several other reasons as well) but when I used to, I'd just recite Radio Shack's corporate headquaters address. In fact, my current supervisor used to work at Radio Shack and he says that their computer has quite a few entries of different variations of the headquaters address so apparently other people have resorted to this tactic as well.
 

Chris Tsutsui

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At Toys R us they ask for your phone number and if u give it to them it's entered in the main computer.

If you are randomly selected they will call your house shortly after the purchase and ask a few questions regarding customer service.

The info you give out on the phone is entered as a national statistic in which stores base and rate themselves.

If employees fail to ask for phone numbers they are written up and can eventually be terminated. They take the statistics seriously as each store is given a grade and ranked to help motivate employees to "win" in sales and service.

I rarely asked for phone numbers and instead typed in random numbers. The management can't tell if we are getting real numbers but can tell immediatly if we are skipping the "enter in phone number" and just pushing enter.

My most common number was 949 987 9877 since it had my area code and was very fast to type in.
 

James_A

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Radioshack requires Names and stuff for returns as a safety thing. Other than that, they don't need it. Read the back of your reciept, it's interesting to see what is put there... Employees can get terminated if they don't get the correct % of names... just FYI.

Jim
 

Steve Owen

Second Unit
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Radioshack requires Names and stuff for returns as a safety thing.
Who's safety? It's for marketing. Plain and simple. I've always refused. I've refused to give out the info everywhere I go. I'm amazed at the number of people who just happily give our their name, address, phone number, etc. to whoever asks for it.

Here's another tidbit... did you know you can refuse to sign on those signature capture terminals that a lot of places have for credit card signatures (Sears and Home Depot come to mind). Do you want YOUR signature digitized and stored in their database? I don't. Simply refuse to sign it and ask to sign on a regular piece of paper. This will fluster most sales people to no end, but they MUST accomodate your request.

-Steve
 

Danny R

Supporting Actor
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I've had a radioshack employee accept this address before without even blinking:
1600 Pennsylvania Ave.
Washington, DC 20500
Here is an address and phone # I often use:
427 E. 17th St., Unit 240
Costa Mesa, CA 92627
(949) 650-0602
Its for a company which sells reply cards dedicated to stopping junk mail. ;) I figure if they actually work then it does no harm, and if it doesn't, they get what they deserve.
 

Bill Eberhardt

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The few times I've gone into rat shack I've used the name, Payne Cash along with a fictitious address. So far they haven't caught on - or at least said anything. ;)
 

Ted Lee

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it's all about metrics and statistics and demographics.

anyone use those grocery store discount membership cards? guess what they're tallying? every single thing you're buying in that store. amazing...i'd love to see that data-base.

"payne cash"...now that is funny!!!
 

Danny R

Supporting Actor
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anyone use those grocery store discount membership cards?

Sam's Club at least gives you a steep discout in return. I've been filling up my car for $1.07 the past two weeks.

Radio Shack wants the info and charge you full price anyway.
 

Leila Dougan

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If anyone's interested in information gathering, I suggest reading Database Nation, a book by Simson Garfinkle. Its not too technical, but definitely an eye-opener.
 

Glenn L

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My girlfriend is the expert on this, but as far as I know stores such as Radio Shack cannot require you to give them any information. This may be a California-only thing, not a nation-wide one.
I do know I've had several conversations at the counter in RS (and other stores: Circuit City, Good Guys, Fry's) go like this:

Guy: Can I get your name & address please
Me: No.
Guy: uh, why?
Me: Because I don't want to.

and that's the end of it. Once or twice I've had to tell them that I'm not required to give any of that info, and I vaguely recall once a long time ago that a cashier had to fetch a manger to verify it.
 

Jefferson

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We had a frequent buyer club at the bookstore where I once worked, and each person's club ID# was their phone number. It was an easy way for customers to remember their ID and it fit the field required in the computer.
 

Steve Owen

Second Unit
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Jan 7, 1999
Messages
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anyone use those grocery store discount membership cards?
You mean that ones in which they artificially raise the price of an item so they they can give it to you "at a greatly reduced price" if you use the card?
Sigh. Can you tell I've got a thing against giving corporate entities any more info than they absolutely need in order to complete a transaction? Yes, I buy diapers and cat food and that means I have a child and a cat (either that or some sort of sick wacko). Is that anyone's business but my own? I don't care to have every purchase I make go into a database that tracks my very existance.
Got these cards? Other than places like Sam's or BJ's (that's different), you don't -need- to use your card... just a card. Swap the cards with your friends and neighbors once and a while. Keeps them from tracking your every move while still giving you the item at the rightful price (remember, it's generally not a discount... it's just getting the price back to where it should be before they artificially increased it to get you to use the card).
And while we're on the subject of privacy, every single PC user who EVER connects to the internet should go download a coyp of Link Removed from LavaSoft. Do it right now. I'm not kidding. Think Radio Shack and your local supermarket are collecting too much info about you? You ain't seen nothin' until you see the sort of information that various spyware components may be sending back to their respective companies.
-Steve
 

Scott Leopold

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Nov 21, 2001
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I've been running Ad-Aware for several months now, and it removes 40-50 components per week from my PC. I also highly recommend it.

To get back to strange security measures, one local branch of one of the major electronics/media chains (I won't mention which one due to the nature of this post, but when I'm in the mood to Buy DVD's, they're often the Best B&M choice--plus, I sometimes go to this branch, which happens to be in Trotwood, because they often have titles the other stores don't) has a policy of checking each and every shopper's bag/purchase against their receipt as they leave the store. Unless you're white, in which case you're waved through. The worst I've seen is the time I was in line to leave the store, and watched as they checked the three guys in front of me, going as far as emptying their entire bags, and asking to check inside one guy's jacket and his wife's purse. We had a car seat, diaper bag, my wife's purse, and our bag with a couple DVD's in it. As they were checking everyone else, the security guy saw me and just waved me through. I'm not sure how many people have actually complained about this, but when I called the manager and the corporate 1-800 number, I received the same response. Both times I was told that, due to high shoplifting rates at the store, it is their policy to check everyone who leaves the store. During high volume periods they claim they perform random checks. I pointed out that I have never been checked, and my observations on just who was checked and who wasn't, and they claimed it just wasn't true. They also informed me that they had never received a complaint prior to mine, which I find difficult to believe.

Another odd security measure, apparently employed by a local Target, is to ignore reports of shoplifting. I was in line and I noticed three young girls (11-13 or so) acting suspicious by one of the displays. This was last summer, and they had a display of cow-pattern clothing & accessories at each of the local stores. The girls were looking around nervously. I saw one girl pick up a scarf then shove it in her bag. Each girl, by the way, had an oversized purse or backpack. One girl slipped on a belt, then pulled her shirt down over it. As I watched, each girl grabbed at least two items. They continued grabbing more as I notified the cashier. The cashier was so adamant in her refusal to believe me that she wouldn't even look their way. I was getting a little irate, and the cashier told me she'd notify security if I didn't settle down. I told her that was fine, but instead she handed me my receipt and asked me to leave. I walked straight to the customer service desk and pointed out that these girls, who were just finishing up, were robbing the place blind. A big, meat-headed security guy came up and wanted to know what my "beef" was. I explained, and he told me I didn't know what I was talking about. Just then, the three girls walked by, less than ten feet behind the guy. One of the girls was even wearing the cow-patterned cowboy hat with the pricetag still attached! I called the security guy and idiot and told him to turn around because all three shopllifters were leaving the store at that very instant. Without looking he asked me to leave, and told me that if I acted that way in the future, I'd be asked to not return. I know for a fact that just the items I saw the girls swipe were worth more than a combined $80. I thought about calling the manager or corporate offices on that one, but I really didn't think they'd believe me, so I just dropped it.
 

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