StopLift Confirms 4 MILLION Incidents of Scan Avoidance at Checkouts Worldwide

StopLift Checkout Vision Systems (now part of NCR) has just detected and confirmed 4 million incidents of scan-avoidance at self-service and manned checkouts at retailers and supermarkets in the U.S. and around the world.

StopLift’s Artificial Intelligence (AI) computer vision technology automatically analyzes overhead video to detect theft, remove the hassle factor from the shopper experience, and improve operational efficiency at self-service and manned checkouts.

StopLift’s Scan-It-All™ technology detects and determines what occurs during each transaction at the retail or supermarket checkout to immediately distinguish between legitimate and fraudulent behavior. As soon as a scan avoidance incident occurs, StopLift, which continually scrutinizes 100% of the security video, flags the transaction as suspicious, identifies the customer or cashier as well as the date and time of the scan avoidance incident.

NCR SmartAssist technology, patented by StopLift, detects and deters self-checkout theft and scan avoidance while simultaneously preventing false alerts and unnecessary interventions. As soon as a scan avoidance incident occurs, SmartAssist alerts the attendant in realtime to assist the customer.

SmartAssist is the rare loss prevention solution that has the added benefit of improving the customer experience. The system recognizes and ignores non-merchandise items (e.g. handbags, cell phones, kids) on the bag scale and other aberrant-but-legitimate situations. It protects the customer from the annoyance of having the transaction interrupted, the embarrassment of having the self-checkout light flash, and the frustration of waiting for an attendant to come and clear it. Honest customers avoid needless delays, spend less time at the self-checkout and more positive face time with attendants. Every self-checkout customer checks out faster and in a shorter line.

Store data shows a substantial reduction in the number of self-checkout interventions with SmartAssist. With fewer false-positive alerts, the attendant can focus on true customer service, acting properly on legitimate alerts and covering a greater number of self-checkout stations. This means greater productivity gains and associated labor savings for the retailer.

Malay Kundu, formerly CEO of StopLift and now General Manager of Computer Vision Solutions at NCR, stated: “Retailers always suspected that self-checkouts would be highly prone to scan-avoidance, and now our technology helps stop it in its tracks – in realtime.

“Using the incidents detected from their own stores, retailers are now able to train staff on the signals indicating when customers are either having problems using the self-checkout or are exhibiting suspicious behavior,” he said.

Scan avoidance incidents can be due to mistakes by the self-checkout customer or the cashier as well as items left in the shopping cart — middle of the basket (MOB) and bottom of the basket (BOB). Malicious scan-avoidance also includes “sweethearting”, when cashiers pretend to scan merchandise but deliberately bypass the scanner, thus not charging the customer for the merchandise. The customer is often a friend, family member or fellow employee working in tandem with the cashier.

See real scan avoidance incidents – and a realtime incident counter at, now topping 4 million incidents.

U.S. retailers lose about $15 billion in shrink every year at both self-service and manned checkouts, and the risk of loss increases as retailers deploy more self-checkouts.

Ticket switching detection is another StopLift AI technology, e.g. a dishonest customer covering the bar code label of an expensive item with the bar code label of a cheaper item. Another ticket switching practice is a customer stacking an expensive item like steak over a cheap item like ramen noodles and passing them over the scanner. In some cases, a dishonest customer will even have the cheap item’s barcode taped to their wrist or in their palm as they make it appear that they are scanning the more expensive item.

NCR offers a suite of other new retail AI technology for self-checkouts:

  • NCR Product Assurance – compare a menu-selected item with the item placed on the scale.
  • NCR Picklist Assist – facilitates scanning of perishable items by identifying items as they are placed on the scale.
  • Yoti age verification to prove your identity through facial recognition AI for restricted items.

StopLift is now part of NCR Corporation (NYSE: NCR), the global leader in self-checkout technology with more than 250,000 installations worldwide.