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Home Depot installing 40,000 high-tech cameras
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution ^ | 09/16/03 | TONY WILBERT

Posted on 09/16/2003 2:14:22 PM PDT by Kennesaw

Home Depot installing 40,000 high-tech cameras

Smile, you're on Home Depot camera, high-tech style.

The Atlanta-based retailer said Tuesday it has begun installing real-time, digital surveillance camera systems in all of its 1,600 stores in North America. The system will use 40,000 video cameras to allow Home Depot to better monitor its stores and cut down on shoplifting, the company said.

While Home Depot acknowledged that several other retailers currently use digital video surveillance, the company said it is one of the first to use a standardized digital system throughout all store operations.

"For the first time, Home Depot will have significantly increased real-time video coverage of its stores," said Troy Rice, senior vice president of operations. "The new system will help continue our trend of lowering losses due to theft, provide a powerful new deterrent and enable faster, more conclusive investigations by law enforcement."

Home Depot said the new digital technology will outperform the analog technology it currently uses because images from dozens of cameras can be stored nearly indefinitely. Also, Home Depot stores where crimes may have occurred can e-mail images to police departments investigating the reports.

The new system also will help Home Depot fight identity fraud, the company said.

Home Depot expects to complete installation of the new monitoring system by the end of January.


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Constitution/Conservatism; Crime/Corruption; Culture/Society; Editorial; Extended News; Miscellaneous; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: bigbrother; camera; homedepot; surveillance
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"images from dozens of cameras can be stored nearly indefinitely"

interesting......

1 posted on 09/16/2003 2:14:22 PM PDT by Kennesaw
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To: Kennesaw
No more free hammers.
2 posted on 09/16/2003 2:15:20 PM PDT by finnman69 (!)
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To: Kennesaw
Among other things, groups that engage in multiple scams at multiple Home Depots are going to be seriously hosed.
3 posted on 09/16/2003 2:15:29 PM PDT by Poohbah ("[Expletive deleted] 'em if they can't take a joke!" -- Major Vic Deakins, USAF)
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To: finnman69
No more free hammers.

Hypothetically speaking, where do you 'slip' those things for their trip out the building?

4 posted on 09/16/2003 2:17:15 PM PDT by _Jim (Resources for Understanding the Blackout of 2003 - www.pserc.wisc.edu/Resources.htm)
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To: Kennesaw
Maybe their camera operators can help me find something inside one of their poorly labeled mega stores.
5 posted on 09/16/2003 2:17:30 PM PDT by TADSLOS (Right Wing Infidel since 1954)
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To: Kennesaw
How about spending some money on hiring more cashiers? Its a half hour wait every time I go into one of their stores.

Maybe you wouldn't have people steal items if they could pay for it in a reasonable time frame.
6 posted on 09/16/2003 2:17:37 PM PDT by lelio
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To: Poohbah
What are you referring to?
7 posted on 09/16/2003 2:17:45 PM PDT by Still Thinking
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To: Kennesaw
If the people running the cameras are as knowledgeable about their job as the people working the floor, they'll show nothing but blurs.
8 posted on 09/16/2003 2:17:53 PM PDT by dead (Perdicaris alive or Raisuli dead!)
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To: Kennesaw
[image] can be stored nearly indefinitely

Here's your 'chance' to make their cork-board in the employee lounge or someone's 'wallpaper' in Windows ...

9 posted on 09/16/2003 2:19:16 PM PDT by _Jim (Resources for Understanding the Blackout of 2003 - www.pserc.wisc.edu/Resources.htm)
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To: Still Thinking
Folks like the Irish Travelers who go around scamming places like Home Depot with phony returns.
10 posted on 09/16/2003 2:19:25 PM PDT by Poohbah ("[Expletive deleted] 'em if they can't take a joke!" -- Major Vic Deakins, USAF)
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To: Kennesaw
That does it. I'll have to go to Lowe's to steal my 8-foot-long 2 by 4's from now on.

Spend more money hiring employees, less on cameras, and I think everyone will be happier.
11 posted on 09/16/2003 2:21:04 PM PDT by Choose Ye This Day (Moving to Turkmenistan, where all the jobs are.)
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To: Kennesaw
"Lets see".... "We will build huge warehouse style stores, and pack them with tons of stuff , and then tell our employees to disappear from sight". "Do you think we will have any problems with theft"?
12 posted on 09/16/2003 2:21:19 PM PDT by Peace will be here soon
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To: finnman69
"No more free hammers."

Just buy a Sears Craftsman, any tool. If it breaks take it back, they replace it for free. I've been through 25 measuring tapes over the past 12 or 13 years and have only purchased two (cause I lost one once).
13 posted on 09/16/2003 2:22:06 PM PDT by Rebelbase
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To: lelio
My Home Depot just instituted self check out. No more clueless cashiers for me.
14 posted on 09/16/2003 2:22:29 PM PDT by dfwgator
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To: lelio; dfwgator
They've got 4 self-scanning and check out machines here too. No more lines.
15 posted on 09/16/2003 2:24:59 PM PDT by ZGuy
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To: Kennesaw
Why does anyone even go to Home Depot? I can see contractors and anyone else buying in bulk, but the legions of homeowners dropping in for a bag of nails mystifies me. Any savings you get on the products is lost when you are standing in line for 45 minutes.
16 posted on 09/16/2003 2:24:59 PM PDT by Darius
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To: dfwgator
My Home Depot just instituted self check out. No more clueless cashiers for me.

Yeah, but now you have the problem of clueless customers in front of you.

They couldn’t possibly make those things simpler, and I still get stuck behind some goober in a tizzy of confusion every time.

17 posted on 09/16/2003 2:26:56 PM PDT by dead (Perdicaris alive or Raisuli dead!)
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To: TADSLOS
Beat me to it.
18 posted on 09/16/2003 2:28:02 PM PDT by Eric in the Ozarks
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To: All
Well gosh.

The kindness just oozes out. Some days FR really ticks me off.

My husband has worked at Home Depot for nearly 10 years. ( Before that he worked at Builder's Square, and before that Hom Quarters, and before THAT ColorTile ) He teaches classes every weekend in home-improvement techniques. The guy knows his stuff, and can guide first-timers through the most difficult projects.

His store gets letters from customers all of the time that refer to him and the kindness and attention he shows his customers.

It's not a fancy job, and the pay isn't stellar, but he's good at what he does.

I don't know about these other stores you people are talkiing about, but my husband's store is well run, well-stocked and friendly, and yeah, they need the cameras, although I hate them on spec, to deal with "shrinkage".

Tia

19 posted on 09/16/2003 2:29:40 PM PDT by tiamat ("Just a Bronze-Age Gal, Trapped in a Techno World!")
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To: dfwgator
My Home Depot just instituted self check out. No more clueless cashiers for me.

Same here. It's starting to catch on, however, so now I get to stand behind clueless customers.

20 posted on 09/16/2003 2:30:48 PM PDT by randog (Everything works great 'til the current flows.)
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To: Kennesaw
My younger brother worked at the Home Depot in the Dallas area. They told him to quit catching so many people stealing. No kidding. (BTW, he quit about 6 months later)
21 posted on 09/16/2003 2:30:50 PM PDT by blam
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To: Rebelbase
Just buy a Sears Craftsman, any tool. If it breaks take it back, they replace it for free.


Gunsmiths know this. They bust that small pin driver all the time, and Sears keeps replacing it. (Of course, they tend to buy $150 of stuff every time they get their "free" tool!)
22 posted on 09/16/2003 2:32:35 PM PDT by Atlas Sneezed
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To: Rebelbase
Just buy a Sears Craftsman, any tool. If it breaks take it back, they replace it for free.


Gunsmiths know this. They bust that small pin driver all the time, and Sears keeps replacing it. (Of course, they tend to buy $150 of stuff every time they get their "free" tool!)
23 posted on 09/16/2003 2:33:52 PM PDT by Atlas Sneezed
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To: Kennesaw
This is good news. Now when the orange-vested clueless shake their heads at me, it will be on tape.

I don't doubt that they have a growing problem with theft; there are so few "associates" wandering the aisles anymore.

24 posted on 09/16/2003 2:33:58 PM PDT by LuLuLuLu (There is a fine line between genius and insanity, and I've erased it.)
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To: tiamat
Sic 'em, tiamat! I think the Depot is fine. I'm just sorry I didn't sell 'em the cameras.
25 posted on 09/16/2003 2:34:59 PM PDT by Mr Ducklips
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To: tiamat
I'm sure your husband is knowledgable. I'm also sure he doesn't work in my Home Depot, because your post leads me to believe he speaks English.
26 posted on 09/16/2003 2:35:53 PM PDT by dead (Perdicaris alive or Raisuli dead!)
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To: Kennesaw
. . . has begun installing real-time, digital surveillance camera . . .

Oh, goodie! . . . Something new to steal.

27 posted on 09/16/2003 2:36:26 PM PDT by LibWhacker
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To: Kennesaw
Two words ... employee theft. Surprises me nobody else mentioned it.
28 posted on 09/16/2003 2:36:28 PM PDT by TheMole
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To: finnman69
No more stainless steel machine screw samples.
29 posted on 09/16/2003 2:36:52 PM PDT by dennisw (G_d is at war with Amalek for all generations)
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To: Darius
Agreed! I avoid Home Depot , Lowes etc.. every chance I can. There are still a few mom and pop hardware stores around and they will do everything they can to keep you coming back. Prices are "slightly" higher, but the service is fantastic. And no long lines and walking around in circles looking for stuff ! If you appreciate courtesy and service, you are more than happy to pay a little more for certain items.
30 posted on 09/16/2003 2:37:28 PM PDT by Peace will be here soon
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To: dead
If the people running the cameras are as knowledgeable about their job as the people working the floor, they'll show nothing but blurs.

And rude too. I was in a HD store this morning, couldn't find something I knew they carried, and called out to a guy walking down the main central aisle. I gave him a couple choruses of "Hello! Excuse me!", but he just kept walking, even though I know he heard me. Also, I know they mention theft numerous times in the article, but my first thought was shrinkage, which I didn't see mentioned once.

31 posted on 09/16/2003 2:37:39 PM PDT by Still Thinking
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To: Mr Ducklips
No kidding! that camera contract would have been nice! LOL!

Thanks!

Tia

32 posted on 09/16/2003 2:37:56 PM PDT by tiamat ("Just a Bronze-Age Gal, Trapped in a Techno World!")
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To: randog
Hmmm ...self-scanning has it's own 'breed' of scams:

from: http://www.rlpx.com/newsuse.htm

- - - - - -

Posted: 06/16/99

"This was posted anonymously... Pretty interesting scam... are you vulnerable?"

I work at a primarily mid-western retailer. I recently recovered some merchandise which an individual had price switched using a method which I had never seen. The subject/group had apparently scanned various UPCs on a home computer scanner, and printed them on address labels. They then placed the new UPCs over the existing ones on more expensive merchandise. A $300 vacuum cleaner rang up as a $19.99 hand vac, and a $200 allergen filtering system rang up as a $9.99 (replacement) filter. We also have utilized a "tear and scan" tag system for large, bulky items for some time now. These are easily switched, or torn from less expensive merchandise and handed directly to the cashier. A subject may take the tag from a $59.99 television and place it on a $499.99 television. He/she then tears the less expensive tag from the more expensive item and hands it to the cashier. Most cashiers don't notice since the item rings up as "filter", "hand vac" or "television". The monotony or repetitive nature of their jobs leave cashiers particularly susceptible to these scams as they won't always match prices with items, especially if the items show up as something similar (i.e. "hand vac"---"vacuum cleaner").

"Just as proof the every cloud has an even darker lining, consider this;

- "What happens when the bogus UPC is removed, and the merchanise is returned for a refund?"
- If your policy is lenient for cash refunds, are you kicking out $300 cash for a $20 purchase?
- Even if you have a stricter policy, odds are the refunder can get an exchange. If it were me, I would make sure that I exchanged the merchandise for a slightly different model, thereby getting a new valid receipt at the full retail.
- Consider the duplicate receipt refund fraud taking place throughout the country, and imagine the amount of stolen merchandise that can now be refunded without the annoyance of having to pay the full amount even once."

- Danno
33 posted on 09/16/2003 2:38:01 PM PDT by _Jim (Resources for Understanding the Blackout of 2003 - www.pserc.wisc.edu/Resources.htm)
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To: tiamat
I don't know about these other stores you people are talkiing about, but my husband's store is well run...

The HD near me is the same way--most of the employees are well trained. I was in there last week to pick up a doo-hickey and when one employee couldn't find it he went and asked another, who ended up finding it for me. It's nice to not hear, "If you don't see it then we don't have it".

34 posted on 09/16/2003 2:38:01 PM PDT by randog (Everything works great 'til the current flows.)
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To: _Jim
"No more free hammers."

"Hypothetically speaking, where do you 'slip' those things for their trip out the building?"

Is that a hammer in your pocket? or are you just glad to see me?

35 posted on 09/16/2003 2:38:19 PM PDT by cowtowney
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To: dead
Oh yeah, College grad and everything. He got into this sort of thing in the 80s, has a taste for it, and even though he could make better money elsewhere, has stuck with what he's good at.

Tia

36 posted on 09/16/2003 2:39:39 PM PDT by tiamat ("Just a Bronze-Age Gal, Trapped in a Techno World!")
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To: randog
...so now I get to stand behind clueless customers.

Probably democrat voters from FL who voted for Gore in 2000. Most call themselves, "Hanging Chads;" the fat ones proclaim they are, "The Dimpled Chads."

37 posted on 09/16/2003 2:40:45 PM PDT by Cobra64 (Babes should wear Bullet Bras - www.BulletBras.net)
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To: Beelzebubba
Not exactly. I was in Sears the other day, because the plastic carrier for the sockets melted to hell when it fell on the hot manifold. I was told the carrier is not part of the tool, and was not under warranty. The warranty also doesn't apply to power tools.
38 posted on 09/16/2003 2:41:52 PM PDT by Still Thinking
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To: LuLuLuLu
I shop at Lowes. They are very accomodating and polite.
39 posted on 09/16/2003 2:42:00 PM PDT by Cobra64 (Babes should wear Bullet Bras - www.BulletBras.net)
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To: dennisw
No more 4'x8'x1" oriented strandboard free samples.
40 posted on 09/16/2003 2:42:08 PM PDT by Petronski (Calm down. Eat some fruit or something.)
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To: randog
Well, I am glad that your store is decent!

Most of the people my husband works with are "tool-twitchers" and home improvement freaks. ( My husband used to have a "Binford Tools" mug from the old Tim Allen series) Most of the guys and gals at the store will happily spend time, and are genuinely interested in your project.

Tia

41 posted on 09/16/2003 2:43:09 PM PDT by tiamat ("Just a Bronze-Age Gal, Trapped in a Techno World!")
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To: Kennesaw
They could use these cameras to spot customers wandering around looking for somebody in an orange vest to provide just a little bit of service. Then again, they might want to put a couple of cameras over at Lowes to see where the customers have gone.
42 posted on 09/16/2003 2:43:59 PM PDT by Junkman
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To: _Jim
Interesting post. The scanners at HD require that you bag your item after scanning it. I think it's weighing the item to verify that you scanned it correctly.
43 posted on 09/16/2003 2:44:57 PM PDT by randog (Everything works great 'til the current flows.)
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To: lelio
"How about spending some money on hiring more cashiers? Its a half hour wait every time I go into one of their stores.

Maybe you wouldn't have people steal items if they could pay for it in a reasonable time frame."

Then don't shop there.
44 posted on 09/16/2003 2:45:20 PM PDT by truth_seeker
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To: dennisw
No more stainless steel machine screw samples.


Heh heh (nervous laughter.)

I like the shops where they have an aisle full of drawers with all kinds of hardware, so you can buy exactly as many 8-cent screws as you need. Those 5 for $1.49 packets drive me nuts!
45 posted on 09/16/2003 2:47:38 PM PDT by Atlas Sneezed
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To: Kennesaw
Wow, I hope a 2X4 lands on my head at one of their stores so I can sue them with their own tapes.
46 posted on 09/16/2003 2:48:58 PM PDT by Porterville (I spell stuff wrong sometimes, get over yourself, you're not that great.)
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To: TheMole
Two words ... employee theft. Surprises me nobody else mentioned it.

Me too. Home Depot doesn't give employees a discount on anything.

47 posted on 09/16/2003 2:52:16 PM PDT by brewcrew
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To: Kennesaw
We are at the very beginning of surveillance technology. Like it or not, in a very few years, we are going to be on video pretty much everywhere we go. Already you see videocams at traffic intersections, in shopping areas, in banks and they will soon be just about everywhere else.

What is different this time is that mass storage capabilities will allow all these images to be stored where they can be indexed and retrieved years later. Technology that can identify faces by assigning a unique code to every human face is very near to reality. All the computers have to do is match up this code to a name.

So for example, let's say Joe Blow gets pinched in Lincoln, NE for shoplifting at a Wal-Mart 10 years from now. Using technology that will be common by then, Joe's face will be scanned in at the police department to obtain his unique "facial code." The police will then do a search of every digital video on file across the nation. All across the country, computers will whir and within seconds, the Lincoln police departments gets 78 "hits" on Joe Blow. The footage is then e-mailed to them instantly and they identify from those 78 video clips seventeen additional cases of shoplifting.

So now our Joe Blow is looking at some very serious jailtime. And when he get out of jail, he'll probably want to have somebody else do his shopping for him. Because every store he enters, silent alarms will go off and security cams will closely monitor his entire visit, with security people ready to close in if necessary. For Joe's facial code has now been "flagged" as a known shoplifter and with a record like Joe's, no retail store will let him enter their store without putting a microscope on him.

This is just a preview of our future. Many good things will come of it but on the other hand, privacy no longer exists. Not only will the government be able to track your every move but so will any corporate entity with access to the national files.

48 posted on 09/16/2003 2:53:54 PM PDT by SamAdams76 (220.4 (-79.8) Earning back my youth one mile at a time)
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To: Kennesaw
Don't be afraid when you go into one of these places and see a skeleton seated in the middle of the store. It's just a guy who waited to have paint mixed.
49 posted on 09/16/2003 2:56:54 PM PDT by BlazingArizona
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To: tiamat
The guy knows his stuff, and can guide first-timers through the most difficult projects.

We need a clone of your husband up here. Usually there's one person with a clue in each department and they're being rug ragged by questions that the others can't answer.

And that really ticks me off too: HD hires a lot people who's only skill is pushing a ladder around. Then the person that does know what they're doing ends up having to manage him, and answer questions. So the expert gets burnt out quickly. Repeat until you have an insane aslyum.
50 posted on 09/16/2003 2:57:52 PM PDT by lelio
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