Retail Return Databases: Fraud Deterrent Or Privacy Nightmare?

No shopper wants higher prices because of excessive return fraud, but many people aren’t comfortable having their driver’s license scanned when making a return at the store, either. We’ve covered the reasons for this before, but Retail Customer Experience took a closer look.

Some consumers think that the system used by many popular retailers to track shopper return behavior across chains, Verify-1 by The Retail Equation, is too much. The core of Verify-1 is a massive database of shoppers and their return behavior, and identities are verified against this database by scanning customers’ identification.

For retailers, the question becomes whether such a requirement is a good idea, especially in an era of identity theft paranoia.

“I think it is a huge invasion of privacy and I personally get very defensive when asked for photo ID,” said Lila Delilah, who runs the popular retail blog Madison Avenue Spy. “After a while, however, it becomes less shocking and you know when to expect it. The downside is that I think twice about shopping at a store like Victoria’s Secret because I may not want to go through the ID ordeal if I need to make a return.”

Would you avoid a store if you knew before shopping there that they use Verify-1 or a similar program?

Driver’s license scanning reduces fraud, but may alienate shoppers [Retail Customer Experience]

PREVIOUSLY: Why Is This Store Scanning My Driver’s License?