Barcode bloopers cost customers millions: study
Sun, 08 Mar 2009 12:00a.m.
Supermarket barcode scanners are giving the wrong prices with some regularity, costing customers millions of dollars each year, a recent study has found.
Researchers at Auckland University of Technology found at least one in every 25 items scanned had the wrong price programmed into the system.
"I think it should be of real concern to consumers," senior marketing lecturer Dr Paul Pickering told the Sunday Herald.
"If you translate it into monetary terms, it has to be in the millions of dollars."
He said very few shoppers reviewed the prices on their receipt.
The higher than expected error rate has prompted Dr Pickering to expand the research to look at how much extra consumers were paying.
"The errors are happening right across the retail area, particularly large-scale stores. When you're pumping 100 items through a till it's much easier to make a mistake and much more difficult for the customer to keep up with the things flying through the scanner."
Global organisation GS1, which manages barcode standards, told the newspaper the grocery industry was one of the best at ensuring its prices matched up. It said less than 20 complaints were received each year and in the case of a price discrepancy the consumer should always pay the smaller amount.
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9/03/2009 9:09:00 a.m.
This has been going on for years ever since the rounding up system came into place buy something for 97c they round it up dot down so how much do they make from that
9/03/2009 7:44:19 a.m.
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