As self-checkout machines become more prevalent in stores, a lawyer warns customers about potential risks associated with these systems. Despite claims of efficiency, self-checkout machines have drawn criticism due to their frequent malfunctions and unintended consequences.
Sylvain Charlebois, director of the Agri-Food Analytics Lab, noted that the primary motivation behind self-checkout adoption was cost savings for retailers, rather than enhancing customer experience. Such machines have been promoted by major chains like Walmart and Target, purportedly saving around 66 percent by replacing human cashiers.
However, many self-checkout machines encounter technical issues, with up to 67 percent of users reporting problems. This has led to retailers accusing innocent shoppers of theft, as some individuals exploit these malfunctions.
Criminal defense attorney Carrie Jernigan issued a warning on TikTok, advising customers to avoid self-checkout machines. She emphasized that retailers might aggressively pursue alleged theft, even for accidental oversights, employing their legal teams to enforce charges.
Jernigan highlighted the risk of stores closely monitoring surveillance footage to identify potential theft, regardless of intent. As a result, customers may face legal repercussions and potential jail time due to minor oversights when using self-checkout machines.
The convenience of self-checkout should be weighed against the legal risks it may entail.