LP Magazine

SEP-OCT 2018

LP magazine publishes articles for loss prevention, asset protection, and retail professionals covering shrinkage, investigations, shoplifting, internal theft, fraud, technology, best practices, and career development.

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Not Just a Pretty Face Facial-recognition technology is one in a class of technologies that are offering stores the chance to be more proactive in the ght against theft and retail crime. Another opportunity to identify shoppers—but sidestep privacy concerns and use existing infrastructure—is via cameras embedded with an algorithm that picks up signals from shoppers' WiFi- and Bluetooth-emitting devices, like smartphones, Fitbits, and Apple•watches. ClickIt's Virtual Lineup system, for example, assigns each individual a unique but anonymous identier, which facilitates data collection such as where that individual goes in the store, which aisles they visit, how long they shop, and—so long as they're in possession of the same device—whenever the individual returns or visits another of the retailer's locations. But that knowledge is never linked in a database with unique identifying information. The marketing and sales benets are obvious, and LP has found use cases as well. For example, a criminal who covers his face during a robbery may nonetheless be easily caught by searching for other times his device was in a retailer's location and reviewing corresponding video to see his unobscured face. Or if a known problem individual enters any of a retailer's locations, store personnel can receive an alert. There is also face recognition technology that is only interested in seeing a face—without concern for who it belongs to. Tied to an entry door using magnetic locks, "face detection" technology requires a clear facial image of an individual before he or she can open the door. The technology provides convenience and other stores that face a heightened risk of robbery because of late-night hours a method to reduce risk by denying entry to individuals who wear masks or otherwise attempt to conceal their identity. FKG Oil reported that it's using First Line Facial Recognition by Blue Line Technology in select Moto Mart locations and, based on positive results, plans to expand its use. Blue Line explains that during overnight hours, store doors remain locked until a surveillance camera outside the store entrance captures a clear image of an approaching customer's face, at which time software unlocks the door, "preventing incidents by forcing potentially violent criminals to be videotaped." There is also recognition technology that doesn't look at faces. Automatic license plate recognition (ALPR) can play a role in retail's effort to combat ORC, according to consultant Joel Rieger. He has helped major retailers implement systems that use ALPR to create white lists for entry into employee parking areas and for security trendspotting, such as recognizing a car that makes an unusual number of passbys. Canadian Tire is one retailer that reports success using ALPR. Utilizing 3VR's VIP License Plate Recognition, one store owner says she uses the tool to verify parking lot activity as well as adherence to store policy, reviewing that each car entering a service bay has a valid service ticket. Finally, most FRT systems enable LP to do more than recognize faces. Retail by DeepCam, for example, is designed to tackle shoplifting holistically. First, through its "advise" technology, AI points investigators to video of individuals who were in the store and exhibited suspicious behaviors. If shoplifting is identied, the system's "match" technology permits the retailer to —ag those individuals. If they again enter either that store or any other location with which the data is shared, personnel will receive an alert. Using AI, the system is designed to get better over time at recognizing suspicious behaviors, increasing its benet to retailers the longer they use it. As such, the ability of a technology tool that can alert a store agent when an individual in aisle 6 is about to steal something no longer seems impossible. With AI, machines can get quite skilled at recognizing when someone looks suspicious in the same way that a good LP agent has always done, said Rieger. "Matching" technology is also likely to change. "As we go forward and evolve this technology as we get the training data, it will be looking at more than the face, such as the whole body positioning or their gait, and use that to be able to say, 'This is the same person,'" said DeepCam COO Charles Fleischman. Will I. Steal Possible Shoplifter 20 SEPTEMBER–OCTOBER | LOSSPREVENTIONMEDIA.COM AN ABOUT-FACE FOR LP?

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