Scammers...
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17-03-2013, 04:25 PM (This post was last modified: 17-03-2013 06:24 PM by Peanut.)
Scammers...
"When there is a program in place to help people, someone is going to find a way to cheat the system." -Matt

This is true. I was busy ranting about a hectic and pointless experience I had at work today. (He dismissed it and said I shouldn't get too "worked up" about it. Then he gave me a really good quote...)

In Michigan, there is a law called "The Michigan Scan Law."
http://www.michigan.gov/ag/0,4534,7-164-...--,00.html

The law is in place to ensure fair and honest pricing for consumers. It is to protect them from sneaky advertising ploys and "bait and switch" techniques.


I am a "Price Accuracy Team Member." I am responsible for making sure all merchandise in the store is correct and I also clearance items as well adjust regular prices up and down. I take my job very seriously. I don't believe I make enough money to warrant the amount of 'serious' that I take in my job, but that's ME. I ALWAYS check if there is a tag on an item when I ring it up. If there is a ticket stating a price, I will change the price manually to match that ticketed price. Once the transaction is complete, the consumer then has the right to get a refund of the DIFFERENCE between the prices marked and charged AND 10 TIMES the amount of the difference. We do NOT like to cheat our guests, as we are an overall honest and family-oriented company. We also do NOT like to have to pay the Scan Law "Bounty."

This is where the aforementioned quote comes into play:
A lady came through my lane and bought about 440$ in merchandise. She paid in cash, I gave her the receipt and she went on her way. About twenty minutes later, I saw the guest in line at Guest Service. I noticed the bags in her cart and immediately thought that I "must have done something wrong." I am ALSO guest service "certified," so I am able to work up there as well. I figured I'd help her at this point seeing how I was the one who originally checked her out.

Loooong story short, she handed me her receipt. 99% of the items listed were with blue prices penned in the margins.
I ended up helping her and following her to all of the places in the store where these "price differences" occurred. She ALSO had "evidence" with her: Pictures taken on her cell phone. There were, indeed, many signs still up; Today is Sunday-the beginning of a new week of sales. Team Members go through the store and tear down old signs and put up the new signs stating the new week's sales. Sometimes, we miss some signs. We will always "make it right" with the guests when they find this issue.

In total, I spent AN HOUR AND A HALF dealing with this woman. I had to manually change most of what was on her receipt and give her the "bounty." (NOTE: For years, I was under the impression that items must be ticketed in order to qualify for the "bounty." Apparently that is NOT the case.) The woman patiently waited while I manually refunded her money. She jotted down notes. (She mentioned "court" in one instance.) I gave the woman 190$ in "bounty." She then returned all items that weren't "wrong." The woman even openly "admitted" to doing this for a LIVING. She purposefully shops at stores to find merchandise priced incorrectly. This is how the woman LIVES. She is a professional scammer and based on the wording of the law, she is doing nothing "illegal."

My manager even stated to the woman that "The Michigan Scan Law is in place to protect consumers from retailers attempting to fraud them. It is NOT in place for people to FRAUD the retailers..."


This got me thinking about when people do what she did, but they receive "Food Stamps" from the government. We pay out CASH in "bounty." If the person is getting government funds, (especially when they aren't as deserving as most others) they are only making a profit in this scam.

People scamming the government and its tax payers makes me LIVID.
I post about it often on my Facebook page. I know there are people on my "friends list" who live off the government programs. They lied to get those benefits and they certainly aren't using the benefits to help them through a "tough time." They are using the system to LIVE OFF THE GOVERNMENT MONEY. This is one post I made after a particular obnoxious guest made a purchase of a CD using her "Bridge Card." (Food Stamp card.)



I'm not against state assistance (Bridge card for example.) Because there
are people who genuinely need help once in awhile. But ANYONE who can
justify to themselves that purchasing a $13 CD using there E.B.T. cash
and then requesting $40 cash back is out of their mind. Especially when
you're on your expensive phone and you have a nicer coat than I do. I
work my ass off to just make it. I am not on Welfare but I needed at one
point in my life. I didn't use it as "help" to get all these
unnecessary things. It makes me livid and disappointed in my community.

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*Yes. I'm aware I used the wrong form of "their." I was so upset that I didn't even notice to edit my post...)

On another occasion, one man used his "Food Stamps" to purchase NON-ALCOHOLIC BEER! (There is still alcohol in it.) The computer accepted the item as a "food" item and allowed the man to use his government-issued funds to buy alcohol. THAT IS WRONG. I also think it is wrong and should be illegal when people use their "Food Stamps" to purchase gum, candy, pop, sweets and other junk food. If there is no adequate nutritional value in said item, it should not be eligible for "Food Stamp" purchases. This program is designed to ensure that people, mainly children, are getting adequate nutrition on a regular basis.

There needs to be a better system in place to monitor who receives benefits and HOW they are used.



"It was life, often unsatisfying, frequently cruel, usually boring, sometimes beautiful, once in awhile exhilarating." -Stephen King
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17-03-2013, 07:12 PM
RE: Scammers...
There are a number of 'continuous improvement' techniques that can be used to remove the defects from any system.

These are all useless, however, if there is no way of identifying and recording the defects.

These moments of fraud, when you spot them need to be treated as Incidents.

The Incident process goes a bit like this...

Identification
Recording (log)
Catergorisation
Prioritisation
Initial Diagnosis
Escalation
Further Investigation and Diagnosis
Resolution and Recovery
Closure.

You were responsible for the above and dealt with the Incident successfully.

The bit that might not be happening is another process... Problem Management.

This is where Incident data (by category) is analysed to discover the root cause, an Error is identified and a Request for Change is submitted with a proposed solution.

In other words, you have the power to deal with the 'symptom' but you are frustrated that no one seems to be dealing with the 'disease'.

I don't know about your county / state / federal laws and how they work but that where the Problem / Change process should be working based on your (and others') Incident data.

Obama promised Change.
Find out who your Change Manager is and submit a Request for Change.

Good luck with that.

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18-03-2013, 08:11 AM
RE: Scammers...
(17-03-2013 04:25 PM)Peanut Wrote:  There needs to be a better system in place to monitor who receives benefits and HOW they are used.

Huh

Yeah, I don't get it.

It's a stupid law, but I don't understand what you are personally upset about.

The Paradox Of Fools And Wise Men:
“The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, but wiser men so full of doubts.” ― Bertrand Russell
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