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Woolworths are trialling a new security feature at their self-serve checkouts, an addition the supermarket is hoping will encourage customers to do the right thing.
Over the weekend, customers started noticing their own faces in the corner of the screen while going through the self-serve checkout, with people assuming they were being recorded while scanning their groceries.
One man shared a photo of the self-serve checkout screen on Twitter, which is now private.
He spoke to Pedestrian.tv and explained it took him a while to notice his own image in the corner of the screen and initially thought it was a malfunction of some sort.
However, Woolworths says customers are not being recorded, the image is a “a live reflection” and only seen by by the customer while they scan their items.
“We know the vast majority of our customers do the right thing at our self-serve checkouts. This is a new security measure we're trialling for those that don’t,” a Woolworths spokesperson said in a statement to Yahoo News Australia.
“Our stores have staffed checkout lanes for customers who would prefer not to take part in the trial.”
Yahoo News Australia understands the camera does not show the PIN pad and is in line with payment card security standards.
While some were shocked by the trial, one person on social media did point out surveillance is common in not just supermarkets but shopping centres and other public spaces.
However the man who spoke with Pedestrian.tv did say there was nothing within the Woolworths store to indicate the new surveillance method, nor was he notified when starting his transaction.
Woolworths resumes packing bags
Starting today, Woolworths staff will resume packing bags for customers in stores, something supermarkets stopped offering amid the coronavirus pandemic.
“As we move into the new normal and embrace rigorous hygiene and social distancing, we are returning to packing customers’ bags at the checkout from Monday (June 1), so long as they’re clean for our team to handle,” a Woolworths spokesperson said in a statement.
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