Retail Employee Theft Databases Riddled With Inaccuracies

On paper, it sounds like a great idea. Create a database of retail employees who are accused of theft and have its contents freely shared with other retailers. Two problems: One, what if the information is flawed, if employees who “confessed” actually argued that they were innocent, and what if this information is being used to deny people jobs? And two, what if it’s depriving retailers of honest, falsely accused, talented retail associates?

This was explored — quite well — by The New York Times on Wednesday (April 3), painting a frightening picture of lawsuits aimed at retailers who did little more than rely on what they thought were professionally maintained employee theft databases. Some of the employees, who submit written statements after being questioned by store security officers, have no idea that they admitted committing a theft or that the information will remain in databases, according to interviews with consumer lawyers, regulators and employees.

See the complete employee theft database article by Evan Schuman of StoreFrontBacktalk