A Radio Shack Manager Explains Why They Ask For Personal Info On Cash Returns

Last week, we pointed out that even with a receipt and the product in hand, and even though you purchased it with cash the day before at the same store, Radio Shack won’t give a refund unless you give them your home address first. We got a lot of insider tips from former employees in the comments section, and the next day we received the following perspective from a Radio Shack store manager. We think his explanation still doesn’t explain why you need personal ID to refund a cash transaction when you’ve got the item and the receipt in front of you, but read on if you want an unverified store manager’s point of view.

I am a current RS manager in standing, so I’ll renege on giving out my name, however, the actual reason for requiring names and addresses is very simple. First, it is listed on the back of every reciept. So it is part of official policy. Second, the rest of our return process is very I suppose lax if nothing else, our products may be returned at any of our stores, following simple rules that are spelled out.

Now the reason the N&A are needed is because it prevents a LARGE portion of theft which is both internal (as spelled out from one of your posters in the comments) and external such as a snatch and grab. If an item is taken from our store, a customer may attempt to return it at several locations around the city as there are numerous radioshacks around, but this is a very big issue, since beyond the name and address, we are liable on our end for issuing the customer credit for potentially stolen merchandise.

This of course is not saying that 99.999 % of our customers are abusing our return policy, but without this, because of our ability to go the extra step, and take care of you, we as a corporation must protect our assets. This also prevents smash and grabs from cars in mall parking lots, as thieves have stolen out of vehicles and attempt to return the items in the store.

The biggest misconception seems to be against a corporation protecting it’s items against theft. We in no sense require ID for a purchase (barring unsigned CC purchases) but it HAS to be required since we will help you with out a reciept if at all possible. Since we as a company do attempt to resolve returns in many cases without reciepts, we do have to have some basic measure of fraud protection.

That customer more than likely could have gotten cash returned if needed without the reciept, but in common sense, a store just won’t hand out money over the counter without a ticket showing why the money is leaving.

On top of that, we also need the information to verify vs the signature on the return slip, since we have dealt with people stealing from relatives it also helps during holidays where a daughter may try and return something their parents bought to the store, and if the parents come in asking, or we have some one else complaining that they were not the person returning the item, we at least have some paper work showing who did.

Oh, and as an FYI, the Name and Address is actually for warranty info since a bunch of our small parts, batteries, and such have a limited 90 warrenty. If you have like a battery blow up, we can look up your purchase and hand you a new pack. We recently started a lifetime guarentee with some of our AV cables. We have in every store on at least one register a giant 8 x 11 sign stating our name and address policy. We specifically mention the only people that have your info is the company and related parties (if you sign up for ATT it goes to ATT, if you sign up for Dish, it goes to Dish, If you sign up for Greendot prepaid, it goes to Greendot).

Once again, very basic items that have been blown out of proportion. I cannot deny that we used to years ago, but when we stopped doing it, traffic dropped due to customers no longer recieving the RS catalog (That was huge for many many parts nuts). It’s a juggling act, so now we ask for it, it’s not required for most types of purchases (contractual, prepaid, and service plans are examples of required), and the actual info just goes into a system that we can use to look up your old tickets if you have problems with your items. The last thing we want is to not be able to help our customer find a resolution.

Certain items like routers can be purchased at any electronics store, and then you run into the potential of having shoplifters hitting up one type of store and returning it at another. If we have the capability of preventing this, all in all, everyone can shop a little safer.

We’re not sure how any of this is less complicated than keeping track of store inventory and requiring a receipt for all returns. The refund-without-a-receipt policy is the sort of goodwill gesture that this writer feels mainly benefits the careless consumer at the expense of the rest of us, so by all means, do away with it if it will bring an end to ID requirements for receipt returns, particularly for items paid for with cash.

RELATED
“RadioShack Won’t Give Refund On Cash Purchase Unless You Show Your Papers”

Comments

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  1. Hanke says:

    Dunno about this one. If I can legitimately make a return on something I bought after I’ve lost (or are too lazy to dig up) the reciept, Passing my ID seems reasonable.

  2. SOhp101 says:

    So because they have no idea how to properly prevent employee theft, they need to take the information of all their consumers and coincidentally receive valuable marketing information.

    Why not just give the option for people to either give their personal info or not? That’s what the main issue is here.

    By the way, if there’s anything I need to buy at Radio Shack, I go and look for it on the internet. Much, much cheaper.

  3. tedyc03 says:

    While I don’t like the idea of having to surrender personal information I think their reasonableness in protecting their assets allows them to ask for it. A thief isn’t probably bright enough to realize they can fake it, but I’ll make up a fake address any time I have to return something (since I don’t think they should get to know who I am if I used cash).

  4. WiglyWorm must cease and decist says:

    All this is true, but the biggest problem is that no matter how or when your’e asked for your name and address, it all goes in to the same system, and everyone in that system gets signed up for the radio shack mailers.

    I am a former Radio Shack employee, and have seen it happen before.

  5. womynist says:

    I before E, except after C

    It’s R-E-C-E-I-P-T not R-E-C-I-E-P-T

  6. JackWalker says:

    The only people that truly seem to complain about N&A are people who have never worked in retail. They reserve their time in cushy office jobs and never truly understand the things we as retail employees have to deal with.

    I had a customer get aggravated with me the other day because she believed that her N&A would be sold to a third-party company, when in fact, we have a written policy stating the exact opposite. That her N&A would be protected by the company and never sold to a third party.

    Yet, in a world full of Identity Thieves and crooks, no one is willing to trust or believe anymore.

  7. Juggernaut says:

    My name?
    A. Customer
    My Address?
    Aisle 3
    Radio Shack Store #?
    St. Hwy. Radio Shack
    Radio Shacktown, 11111
    My Tel. #?
    723-467-4225 (rad-ios-hack)

  8. smirky says:

    @Hanke: But this was in response to RS requiring ID WITH a cash receipt. I agree that without a receipt it isn’t unreasonable to require ID to cut down on return abuse but that wasn’t the case of the original story.

  9. Buran says:

    Blah blah blah justification blah blah blah whine blah blah blah excuse blah blah blah excuse to shop elsewhere blah blah blah.

  10. mbd says:

    I can understand requiring ID if the customer does not have a receipt, but when they do, that is all that should matter.

    If some family memeber stole both the item and the receipt to make a return, that is a family (and maybe a police) matter, but should have no bearing on RS’s return policy.

  11. Juggernaut says:

    @Hanke: cheese-it guys, the grammar police are here!

  12. parad0x360 says:

    Asking me personal info will in no way protect your company from fraud. People who want to steal will do so plain and simple. The only people you are pissing off are your honest customers and its policies like this that keep me from shopping at RS even when I know its the only place I can easily get certain products.

    I would rather wait a week due to shipping from buying it online.

  13. Hey, if it works so well and (hypothetically) the majority of customers don’t mind giving out their personal information for almost no reason, why isn’t everyone doing it?

    I don’t think it’s a case of Radio Shack being the great innovator, it’s just a skeezy way of getting your marketing info. But with email, magazines, other random booths they put at sports events, etc, its never been that hard to get marketing info.

  14. And by the way, when asked to do this by other companies that are doing give aways or similar promotions, I consistently use a fake address, dead email and a disconnected phone number. I hope they enjoy all the bounced emails and wasted mailings they get to send for asking me way to much, totally unnecessary information.

  15. tortcat says:

    I have zero problem with a company requiring id to make a return. ( or parental id if a child bought the item).

    One of the reasons it is done is in fact for loss prevention and its a common practice.

    Next time you are out…take a look on the ground around almost any store you go to..especially those in strip malls that have an outside facing..its normally very easy to pick up a reciept laying on the ground.

    Next step for someone to do is to go in and grab an item(s) that are said reciept.

    You now have items and a receipt and can carefree return at will if not asked for ID.

    Seems straightforward to me and our family at least has no problem showing ID if we do a return, not everyone is honest..and if I am signed up for a mailer..oh well ..takes only a moment to throw it away if I dont want it…/shrug

  16. tortcat says:

    Ugh..and sorry…my 2 finger typing at lunch leads to errors lol.

  17. Tank says:

    there may be some validity to this.

    it been years, but i know of a guy that used to work for builder’s square (who was owned by k-mart). he’d steal stuff from builder’s square, then return the item without a receipt to k-mart because they sold the same items. he had to fill out the forms when returning them. he ended up getting caught, and fired.

  18. johnva says:

    So because they don’t trust their employees not to steal from them, they want me to trust their employees (that they don’t trust) with my personal information?

  19. Cogito Ergo Bibo says:

    Reason 546 not to shop at Radio Shack: treating all customers who attempt to return a cash-bought item WITH a receipt as potential criminals. Well-played!

  20. XTC46 says:

    I think its reasonable. I bet it helps prevent people from retail renting and I believe a company has the right to protect its assets.

    As long as they dont start sending you garbage in the mail, there is nothing wrong with this.

  21. goOutSide says:

    I am not surprised by this at all, most of the small chain stores in malls and shopping centers have their machines set up to not return anything unless you give a name and address. I worked for Hot Topic for 3 years and was not allowed to return anything at all without a name and address. At our store though we did have a generic fake name we used for anyone who refused to give name or address.

  22. cmdrsass says:

    Ironic isn’t it? The store manager won’t post his name or store address in defense of the policy, yet demands names and addresses from his customers.

  23. Dobernala says:

    @tortcat: It isn’t a common practice.

  24. DashTheHand says:

    So what hes saying is that if a store a few miles away is apparently missing something that you paid for and legitimately want to return, you are now a suspect of theft?

    Good job.

  25. sleze69 says:

    If an item is taken from our store, a customer may attempt to return it at several locations around the city as there are numerous radioshacks around…

    I call bullshit. If you return an item with a receipt, it is returned and that receipt’s transaction ID will show it in their POS system.

    At MicroCenter, 13 years ago, we were able to track purchases and returns between stores in different states. If RS still can’t do this simple form of IT (among local stores at least), then they are a great example how an aging company slowly declines into oblivion.

  26. calvinneal says:

    This manager is obviously a Harvard graduate.

  27. Anonymously says:

    I don’t understand how this explanation covers the original story. The original story was about a return with a receipt, the explanation is mostly about a return with out a receipt. The other part…

         “On top of that, we also need the information to verify vs the signature on the
         return slip, since we have dealt with people stealing from relatives it also helps
         during holidays where a daughter may try and return something their parents
         bought to the store, and if the parents come in asking, or we have some one
         else complaining that they were not the person returning the item, we at least
         have some paper work showing who did.”

    just doesn’t hold water with me. I don’t believe it’s their responsibility to make sure person returning a cash purchase with a receipt is the same person who purchased it.

  28. MissPeacock says:

    This is just like Belk asking me for my name, phone number, full address, and DRIVER’S LICENSE NUMBER to make a cash return with receipt. I haven’t shopped there since.

  29. allisonG says:

    I don’t think asking for information is unreasonable. Besides, in any retail company I have worked for, that info stays on the form and is never entered into a database for marketing.
    Don’t like it? Don’t buy things you don’t need. It’s that simple.

  30. jaydeflix says:

    “We in no sense require ID for a purchase (barring unsigned CC purchases) but it HAS to be required since we will help you with out a reciept if at all possible.”

    That makes full sens….wait… what?

    We don’t require it, but it has to be required?

  31. vladthepaler says:

    Seems to me they could require ID for returns without receipts, but accept returns with receipts without needing an ID. Unless they are concerned with shoplifters who also have the presence of mind to steal a receipt.

  32. fhic says:

    I as a consumer must also “protect my assets” so I’ll take my purchasing power to another store with a less asinine return policy.

    “Have a nice day, and thanks for not shopping at Radio Shack.”

  33. laddibugg says:

    different store, but can someone explain why victoria’s secret requires id for ALL returns, even credit card retuns? That’s not the only reason I don’t shop there, but it is one of them.

  34. rellog says:

    Why get rid of the cash return without receipt? Simply stipulate that if there is no receipt, then ID is required.

    His entire explanation is less than adequate. And just because it is listed on the BACK of the receipt, doesn’t mean it’s enforceable. That’s paramount to having a check that has ink that appears after it is accepted stating that all store poicies are null and void… The terms need to be posted and customers be able to read PRIOR to the transaction, not after…

  35. rellog says:

    @sleze69: And you aren’t necessarily able to return to other stores anyway. I tried to return an item I bought with a check almost a month earlier (a few yearts back) and was told they wouldn’t do a return anywhere but the original store, since I used a check. It didn’t matter that the check had long cleared.

  36. knyghtryda says:

    I encountered this at a pepboys actually. They wanted my phone number for a return. The thing is, I paid with a credit card, and I had my receipt. The cashier was one of the most rude people I’ve met in a long time, and when I asked about the policy, she got extremely defensive. Finally, she called the manager, who happened to be very polite and actually explained the entire policy. The gist of it was very similar to RS policy, but at the end of it he said I didn’t even have to provide the info if I didn’t want to. All I ended up giving them was a name and zip. Since they already had my name on the receipt, I didn’t see much wrong with that.

  37. drjayphd says:

    @Juggernaut: You are so lucky 723’s an invalid area code. ;)

  38. This is just an attempt to collect private information for the purpose of turning it all over to George Bush and his hatchet team of privacy invaders. I won’t shop at places that ask me to surrender my privacy.

    Period.

  39. rg says:

    Rules are rules kiddies. If you don’t like a stores rules don’t shop there. Stores are allowed to set their own rules on stuff like this, they don’t even have to tell you the rules as long as they’re listed in the store or on the receipt. It’s the consumers job to read the rules and agree to them, which they do by making a purchase. Grow up, take responsibility for your own actions.

  40. TrinKagen says:

    GO TO ANY RETAILER AND DO A RETURN… IT WILL HAPPEN THERE TOO! BB Circut City Walmart JC Penny you name it!

  41. madanthony says:

    I’m thinking what they want to prevent is someone buying one of an item with cash, than shoplifting a bunch of the same item and returning them over and over again for cash.

    It does seem like there are probably better ways to do it, like by transaction ID, but if their POS system doesn’t let them do it, I can see doing it by address.

  42. mac-phisto says:

    @corporateamericabites: paranoid much?

  43. mac-phisto says:

    @TrinKagen: exactly. people make this out like it’s a big deal. news flash: you go into just about any retailer with a return & they all ask 2 questions:
    -can i have your receipt?
    -can i see your license?

  44. knyghtryda says:

    @TrinKagen:
    Umm… no. I can do a return at circuit city, Target, Walmart, Best Buy etc and never need to give that info. The reason is simple, all those stores keep a record of your transaction. If you pay by credit, there should be no need to check that info, because there is no direct exchange of cash. With cash transactions its more understandable, but I think if there’s a receipt then as long as the receipt can be clearly marked that a return has been made, no checks are needed. Barring all returns w/o receipts, while a bit draconian, I think might be the right decision as it does protect the retailer against theft and return.

  45. satoru says:

    I’m not really sure why people are so miffed about this. I can only surmise the luddites who cling to their cash for anonymity see this as some kind of affront to their rights. Theft is a gigantic problem for any store. Is it really such a huge onerous thing to ask for ID when returning an item? Remember that cash returns are the most dangerous for retailers because there is zero way for them to track the theft. Also thieves want money, so they’re not going to try to refund it on a credit card, so you’re accurately targeting your most vulnerable avenue for fraud.

    To those who say “what if I don’t have ID”, I say “too bad”. I mean unless you’re under 16 in today’s day and age you have to have some kind of identification. If you don’t that’s certainly not the retailers fault.

  46. Dobernala says:

    @satoru: Ever heard of a receipt? You don’t get one of those when you’re shoplifting things.

  47. snclfe says:

    I think a lot of the scenarios this manager describes have nothing to do with the original Making-A-Cash-Return-With-A-Receipt scenario described.
    If their concern is that some will make multiple returns on the same receipt, there are both high and low tech ways to prevent this. Many retailers bar-code their receipts. If someone is making a cash return, they can scan the receipt to verify the item has not been returned on the receipt previously. Or, after making the return, just make a note ON the receipt that the item was returned and include a date and store location. There’s lots of ways RS can safeguard against fraud without violating customer privacy.

  48. JasonKeiderling says:

    From origoinal post: “Oh, and as an FYI, the Name and Address is actually for warranty info since a bunch of our small parts, batteries, and such have a limited 90 warrenty.”

    This is the part I have a huge problem with. I worked for Radio Shack briefly. It was explained very, very clearly to us by our District Manager (David Goodwin who operated out of the Hazelton, PA dictrict office) at our sales meetings that the reason for the name and address was entirely for marketing purposes. Radioshack sends out that stupid junk mail flyer that no one actually wants, however, Radioshack’s upper management believes these flyers generate revenue so they make us get the name and address so these can get sent out to customers who actually shop at Radioshack instead of being mass mailed. That this was the reason was covered in great depth.
    It was also the single biggest problem I had with the job. Just like Hollywood Video and Gamestop do with their variosu items they have to push on customers to drive them away such as magazine subscriptions and game reservations, Radioshack tracks every associates Name-And-Address percentage and fires people who’s get too low. If I remember correctly 97% was the minimum for keeping your job!

  49. god_forbids says:

    @SOhp101: Maybe they can’t prevent employee theft because so many “Consumerists” work for them, and believe it is their god-given right to steal anything as long as it belongs to a company.

  50. drnmr says:

    If the drones at Radio Shack request an address, just make one up. With very long ridiculous street names and bogus address numbers. Eventually these twerps will catch on.

  51. JasonKeiderling says:

    @drnmr: Actually they like it when you do that. Cashiers at Radioshack are under such pressure from management to get a name and address on the receipts, and such pressure from customers not to ask, that they frequently try to get away with throwing another name or a bogus name ont he receipts. The problem is if it’s a made up name and the customer looks at the receipt they get mad. If it’s a non-name like Cash Customer No Address then management will fire the employee if caught. If you make one up they get a name on the receipt that won’t get them fired and won’t get you mad. They don’t care if you’re James T Kirk 1701 Enterprise Lane. They’re just glad they got a nem outta you.

  52. metaled says:

    @Orig.OP: This also prevents smash and grabs from cars in mall parking lots, as thieves have stolen out of vehicles and attempt to return the items in the store

    How the hell would requiring Name and ID, PREVENT a smash and grab from a car in a parking lot? And I really seriously doubt RS would use this information to catch the criminal on behalf of the customer (Other Customer Privacy rights etc.). I Doubt RS would do anything towards helping out a theft victim unless they were required to by a law enforcement agency. Example, My car windows are broken out, my package from radio shack was stolen, I walk into radio shack and ask the manager to please notify me if anyone comes in with that particular product to return it. First, how would they know it was mine? I don’t have the receipt since it is in the bag itself. Second, since they have all material, I don’t have a serial number to prove it was mine. Third, what manager is going to run checks on the computer for the next few weeks and call me out of the blue and give me the name and address of all customers that might have come in to return Batteries, headphones, electronic components or as in the original story $1.50 pointometers. Not one manager would do it for me or for law enforcement (without a court order)
    None of it would help in BUSTING the thief even if they did provide the information. Smash and grabs are usually witnessless crimes, so the most evidence that could be provided would be a slight suspicion at most!
    Do they record the serial numbers from each product that is purchased, stolen or returned? If not on a 1, 2 BUT ALL 3 counts, then his explanation has absolutely no truth to it. Especially on small ticket items!
    This Manager’s answer just blows chunks, he is believing the corporate info they are supposed to pass onto the customers. It is for customer tracking and buying profiles plain and simple. And no, I did not read the entire article, I started laughing too much at just this part!

  53. scoosdad says:

    “We do that because we can… …it’s printed on the back of the receipt… ….this one goes to eleven!

  54. metaled says:

    @original OP: helps during holidays where a daughter may try and return something their parents bought to the store, and if the parents come in asking, or we have some one else complaining that they were not the person returning the item.

    and then : We have in every store on at least one register a giant 8 x 11 sign stating our name and address policy. We specifically mention the only people that have your info is the company and related parties

    Bullshit! So a parent coming in asking if their daughter returned the Christmas Gifts the parent bought, they would be entitled to this information? How do you know the “Parent” bought it? Your story sounds like you give out the PRIVATE information to just about anyone that walks in. Social Engineering? I want to find out the name and address of the cute woman who just returned a Phone, Just tell you my car was broken into and a phone was stolen. I hope you aren’t really a Manager in a RS! You state over and over in these instances the information will be given out! It is definetely NOT protecting your customers.
    Even more reason NOT to give ANY info to RS EVER! How can you justify ANYTHING you are saying? It’s Nuts!

  55. u1itn0w2day says:

    I guess they’re trying to track and discourage serial returners who are more than likely thieves.But small cash purchases with a reciept?

    Even if you go to a different Radio Shack you would think it’s not possible to use that same reciept again to return stolen merchandise else where.Cash or charge you would assume that the reciept is canceled out if returned in RS’s computer system.I guess as long as the policy is signed or spelled on the reciept they can do it.

  56. Me - now with more humidity says:

    COUGH** bullshit **COUGH

  57. Lucky225 says:

    someone care to scan in the back of a ratshack receipt? I noticed he didn’t quote the policy in text..

  58. lestat730 says:

    It’s amazing that RadioShack is even still around. There’s one in my town that never has anyone parked there and yet they’ve existed for many years. Wasn’t there even a consumerist article many months ago that quoted a CEO or something saying they don’t know why people shop there?

  59. u1itn0w2day says:

    Dug up a reciept,your name,address & phone number MAY be required to process your refund.Souds like a local policy here.That ‘may’ be required let’s them do it.And the policy says as long as the funds are available they’ll refund it.I thought they would have a cut off of like 50$ but they don’t.And even if there’s a serious dispute over a reciept or return I guess they could pull surveillance photos and time sinc to the purchase time.

    I think what he was saying about the relative stealing thing is that they don’t want a family member returning something that ALREADY was returned.It almost sounds like they’re NOT tracking reciepts which would allow the same reciept to be used twice.

  60. JasonKeiderling says:

    @lestat730: @lestat730: They are still around because despite having almost no customers because of their business model. If a normal store purchases an item for $40 they would sell it for $60 (a markup of $20). Radioshack would sell that item for $280 (a markup of $240). That way every time a sucker buys one item from them they make as much profit as when people buy 12 things from a normal store. They don’t get very much business but it only takes a few marks shopping there to keep their doors open. It’s worth pointing out too that the hypothetical $280 item I just mentioned would probably be regularly priced at $400 but on sale 9 or 10 months out of the year like everything else.

  61. WraithSama says:

    @JasonKeiderling:
    The REAL way Radio Shack gets you is because they know that every now and then you need some special part to fix the broken dialysis machine you’re working on and short of ordering it, Radio Shack is the only brick-and-mortar store nearby that has what you need. God help you if the part needs to last more than a week.

  62. Lucky225 says:

    @u1itn0w2day:

    Could you type it up word for word? Usually when people put “may” there’s conditions under which that may comes into play. (i.e. you don’t have the receipt, method of payment, etc.)

  63. u1itn0w2day says:

    Lucky225:This is from the back of the receipt under the “return policy” paragraph 3.-“Your name,address,and phone number may be required to process your refund”.It talks about a cash refund and you get cash if you paid cash as long as funds are available.This is an 18″ long reciept-the “warranty policy” is 4 paragraphs.Now I did notice on the front in register printing “Your name,address and original receipt are required for all refunds” .The front also says “Sales and returns are subject to the terms and conditions identified on the back.” I don’t know if a particular store controls the printing on the front.

  64. Lucky225 says:

    @u1itn0w2day:

    word thanks for the info, I’m gonna check at my local RS later when I care lol

  65. b_rent says:

    @JasonKeiderling:

    Are you kidding me right now? I am going to assume that you either worked for the Shack a long time ago or we just must do things differently out here on the west coast. I just quit RadioShack, I had worked there for about a year (had seen 3! managers in that time) and I totally agree with all the comments about RadioShack being a totally outdated company with some very ridiculous mark-ups and even more ridiculous policies. I worked at a location that had a lot of retirees around and they didn’t mind paying extra if it meant I was going to sit down and talk with them for 30 minutes about what they want. I think that’s why RadioShack still exists. Is it for the internet scourging, ebay purchasing, consumerist reader? No way. It is a store that lives of a completely different generation.

    But, to get back to my point, in my time at the store I was never told that the personal information taken for a return was used in any sort of marketing scheme. District monitoring Name-And-Address Percentages? Min. 97?! Sounds like a District specific thing. I am in at least 5 different RS databases and have yet to receive a mailer, and I live less then a half-mile away from one!

    As for the true reason behind why we required to take the name and address for returns? I never did get a straight answer on that one. It was usually a very impromptu response from one of my many managers that was much like the OP. Thusly, since I was payed on commission I tried to piss my customers off the least amount as possible so I would almost always type in just periods for all the spots if the customer was angry.

    But to be honest, it almost always only benefited the customer to be in the computer. It made returns so much easier because I was able to look up purchases, whether you paid with cash, check, or card.

    So just remember, although you may throw off the Info Hungry RadioShack Big Wigs by saying that you’re Jean-Luc Picard, when you try to return that 90$ cable you found for 9$ on monoprice.com, but lost your receipt, there’s not much the poor poor soul working retail can do for you.

  66. chrisbacke says:

    Hang on, do people still shop at Radio Shack? You guys must not have gone to the one I used to work at… It’s closed now… I’ll second (or third or fourth) everyone else saying – GET IT ONLINE! Besides, the Radio Shack catalogs make good shredded paper for your pet hamster (or other pets).

  67. jbtampa says:

    I was a store manager in the 70’s for Radio Shack. TRS-80, CB, 8 track….anyway, they practiced drop by security polygraphs and store inventories as a routine, and to not collect name and address for a D cell was grounds for punishment, as in above. I happened to mention this to a 20 something sales guy last week, and he remarked how they barely get drug screens now……geesh, I remembered, glad drug screens weren’t around in the 70’s…… ;)

  68. rshmgr says:

    Look people, the issue here is that the company is trying to prevent fraudulent refunds. Yes, you have a receipt and yes you paid with cash. That does not mean that you couldn’t have bought a product, got a receipt, shoplifted the exact same product from another store and tried returning the product. There are are also other numerous ways to obtain a receipt. Obtaining your information prevents the same receipt being used for multiple refunds. If you don’t like it, the solution is simple. Don’t buy anything, ever, or don’t buy something you think you might have to return.

  69. stacye says:

    @rshmgr: I’m really curious as to how asking for your address prevents this from happening? Ok, you purchased the item, you went and stole another item, and now you’re returning it to the RS. You give YOUR legitimate receipt, with YOUR legitimate address, and receive a refund. The store receives their product back, and you defrauded another non-radio shack store.

    As for getting a receipt, and walking in to steal the product for return…. What are the odds that the person paid cash for what you are returning? I assume if you’re returning an item paid with a CC, then you must present said CC for the refund. And even if they did pay cash, I’m pretty sure the RS employees are going to notice that you walked in with nothing, pulled something off the shelf and then tried to return it. Every RS store I’ve been to is very small, very open, and has security cameras setup where they can see you walk in.

  70. rshmgr says:

    stacye, you would be surprised what people would do.

    As for the customer who’s buys something in order to obtain a receipt, the customer buys a product. Then they shoplift the same product they just bought at another store and return the stolen product at one store and the first product at another store and the customer just made a quick $50 to $100 or whatever the cost of the product is.

  71. u1itn0w2day says:

    Shouldn’t the identifier be the receipt number rather the customer’s information.If the records were stored by receipt number wouldn’t that prevent the same receipt from being used twice.Either way you still have shoplifting which is a security matter.

  72. ivanthepig says:

    Couldn’t you just give them a fake address, and phone number? Or does it have to match your ID? heh.

  73. planetdaddy says:

    Go shop somewhere else.

  74. 1TrueHeart says:

    I’m a Business Systems Analyst working with a Radio Shack Franchise owner to improve his business. I STRONGLY AGREE with Radio Shack’s policy of asking for Name and Address (via ID) on a Return of any type (with or without a receipt).

    From a business perspective there are two good reasons I can think of for this policy.

    1. Helps prevent and track return abuse.
    Radio Shack is a prime target for the person who wants to use (insert your item here) for the weekend. If you know your going to return it, Radio Shack’s slightly higher price is no object. It’s so much easier to get in/out than the big box stores and returns are fast and easy. Besides, there’s a Radio Shack on every corner. This makes it most weekend “renters” store of choice.

    2. Employee theft.
    While most employees are honest a few bad apples slip through. Any contractor, employee or cleaning lady taking out the trash could easily obtain a pile of cash reciepts and snatch the matching item for an easy return at another store.

    Like everything in life, a few bad people run it for the rest of us. Nationwide, 8% of the purchases are returned. At the store I work with, much less than 25% of returns are actually defective. Fun fact: more than 50% of metal detectors are returned within 2 weeks in good working condition. (Lost a ring outside?)

  75. guevera says:

    @satoru: “let me see your papers?” That’s OK w/you?

  76. u1itn0w2day says:

    If receipts out of the trash are a worry that’s why tracking by receipt number would make a difference.Aren’t RS registers networked to a central location for real time accounting.

  77. JasonKeiderling says:

    @b_rent: Actually having your name and address in the computer had absolutely no affect on your ability to make a return without a receipt when I worked there circa 1998-99. This used to annoy customers greatly as they assumed it would make a difference. The RS policy on no-receipt returns was to give store credit for the lowest sale price within the last 3 (or was it 6) months. There actually was a valid reason for this policy. I won’t describe it in great detail, but suffice it to say it prevented some scams from being possible.