JD Sports said the looting seen during the riots would not harm its profits this year.
Sports retailer JD Sports has said last month’s riots led to £700,000 of its stock being looted, but says its full-year profits will not be damaged. (BBC website)
What about RFID (Radio Frequency ID ) tags. A bit like bar codes but with a virtually limitless set of IDs meaning every item of clothing could have its own individual RFID. Even better than Bar Codes, these RFIDs don’t need to be scanned with a “gun” rather just standing near the scanner will pick up the RFID chip, so small it, or many can be embedded in any item.
So, lets say JD Sports was using RFIDs. A pair of trainers is stolen and that unique identifier is marked as belonging to stolen property. Thief walks into a JD Sports shop, the RFID detector picks up the presence of stolen goods, the thief is very easily identified and dealt with!
Introduce this technology widely enough and theft of most items from shops, while still possible under riot conditions, or burglary or similar, becomes almost impossible to use. Stolen items immediately become worthless.
Perhaps extend this to the home. Maybe we can all have an RFID detector. Simply go through the home and catalogue all your possessions that have RFID tags as yours. Simply recording the RFID means you very easily build a database of your own stuff, easily downloaded to the police, or perhaps ebay should you wish to sell anything ?
If you are burgled, again the item can only be used within a very limited area, take it or wear it in a shop or location with an RFID detector and immediately there will be an alert of stolen goods.
Is it expensive? No, very very cheap, so cheap and small that you could embed many RFIDs in a single item. The uses go far beyond stock taking and anti theft. Imagine your washing machine alerting you to a non colour fast item being put in with the whites. Or a recycle bin showing green for the correct recyclable thing and red that its the wrong bin!
Maybe JD Sports has been using RFID, maybe there are a few more rioters or generally bad people who will have their collars felt who thought they had got away with it! I hope so.