Local supermarkets use NSA-style spying on their own customers
Wrong. Loyalty cards are about way more than just making you feel special by saving you a few measly cents off your bill.
According to a report by The Guardian, stores use these Big Brother-esque card programs to build sophisticated databases on their customers which include everything from your demographics to how much you spend and how often you shop. This data is then analyzed National Security Administration-style and used to target and entice you based on what you might consider buying and when.
The data mining goes even further than club cards. Stores will also look, supposedly anonymously, at credit and debit card purchases to analyze how often a particular customer comes in and what they buy when they do. If shoppers who spend more all tend to buy the same product, that product will always get stocked by association even if it isn't a hot seller.
Using credit or debit card digits, stores will even go so far as to hire research firms to analyze the other places their customers shop as a way to decide where to build a new location, for example.
Although shops claim they do not sell customer data to third party vendors, the stores interviewed for The Guardian would not divulge how deals were worked out with brands to decide what coupons to offer a shopper for what products and when. You can best believe it is anything but random coincidence.
Collection of vast amounts of data on shoppers isn't anything new for most retail outlets, but some have taken it to a level hardly anyone would suspect. Take Target Stores Inc. for example. The company doesn't just hire cashiers, stockers and store managers. They also hire mathematicians and data scientists.
In an interview with The New York Times, Target Statistician Andrew Pole said, "If you use a credit card or a coupon, or fill out a survey, or mail in a refund, or call the customer help line, or open an e-mail we've sent you or visit our Web site, we'll record it and link it to your Guest ID. We want to know everything we can."
That 'everything' is then used to try and convince you that Target is the only store you will ever need for anything you will ever buy. It's part of the 'predictive analytics' department that most retail outlets operate in an attempt to get to know as much about you as physically possible in order to sell you more and more stuff. Target has become particularly adept at this; using sophisticated algorithms and analyses, the store was even able to tell that a teen girl had become pregnant before her own father knew based on a pattern derived from what she bought over a period of time. Her dad only found out she was expecting after she received coupons for Target brand baby products in the mail.
It's one thing to save a few bucks, but when does profiling your every financial move in a store go too far?
Would you be surprised to learn that Target has a top-rated forensics lab that employs FBI-sponsored scientific working groups to solve shoplifting cases in its stores? Not only do these labs look like something straight out of an episode of CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, with researchers performing latent fingerprint analysis using high-tech computer forensics, but Target investigative scientists have also worked on homicide and felony cases for resource-strained law enforcement bureaus on the side.
Think about that next time you readily hand over all your personal data for a discount on socks.
( via naturalnews.com )
SaniaMirza wrote October 2, 2013 11:43:21 PM CEST
my classmate's step-sister makes $82/h hourly on the internet. She has been out of a job for 6 months but last month her pay was $20983 just working on the internet for a few hours. Read more on this site..
properREDeye wrote October 2, 2013 2:46:22 PM CEST
People still dont realise that in this world of bits and bytes personal information is worth more than cash, so they still give it away unsuspectingly in good faith that it will only be used for good. Well i will let you in to a secret, its not about saving you money, its about making them more. They dont care about what YOU want, all they want is easy access to your pocket. I never sign up for these things, they cost you money in the long run, you get nothing for nothing in this world, especially off big companies