Preventing Theft: Point of Sale Activation

If you’ve ever purchased a gift card, then you’ve already seen how effective Point of Sale Activation (POSA) – our new innovative theft deterrent – can be. Similar to how a gift card must be activated at checkout, POSA requires certain products to be scanned at the register to work.  

POSA was created to address organized retail crime (ORC), a growing problem for all retailers. ORC is made up of groups of thieves working together to steal and resell merchandise. In 2020 alone, The National Retail Federation estimates that an average of $719,548 per $1 billion in sales was lost to ORC.  

The Home Depot’s Asset Protection team regularly works with law enforcement to address the rise in ORC and has successfully identified and thwarted hundreds of suspects across the country. 

“Retailers that try to stop theft in a meaningful way must find a balance between effective security and protecting the customer experience for honest shoppers,” says Scott Glenn, vice president of asset protection at The Home Depot. “It’s this challenge behind the innovative and creative approaches our team is taking.” 

POSA is powered by Bluetooth technology built into certain products with an on/off switch that must be activated at the register. If that doesn’t happen, the product won’t turn on, meaning it has no value until someone pays for it.  

What’s Next for Point-of-Sale Theft Deterrence
Our point-of-sale security program is currently being tested in stores around the country, and customers have experienced smooth integration during transactions. Moving forward, The Home Depot plans to extend the POSA program to more stores and potentially more product categories. 

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