With the improvement in technology, more stores are adopting a self-service checkout process including Walmart. 

There is a higher chance shoplifters may act smart because no Walmart associate is present to monitor the process of a self-service checkout.

So how does Walmart track shoplifting in 2022? In this article, we will discuss how Walmart tracks shoplifting and the repercussions on those that are caught.

Quick Fact:

  • The latest means Walmart tracks shoplifters is through the use of image recognition technology.
  • Walmart loses about 1% of its annual revenue to shoplifters.
  • Shoplifters above 16 may be handed over to the cops and may be charged in court.
  • Shoplifters above 16 may be handed over to the cops and may be charged in court.

How Does Walmart Track Shoplifting?

Walmart is the world’s largest retail giant, and it also finds ways to make shopping faster and more convenient for its customers.

How Does Walmart Track Shoplifting?

Since the increase of self-service checkout Walmart stores being added to the available means of checkout, shoplifting, and theft have increased. 

It is reported that Walmart loses about 1% of its revenue generated by theft and shoplifting every year. That accounts for about $5,531,000,000 in 2021 (over five billion dollars).

Measures Adopted By Walmart To Tame Shoplifting

To tame shoplifting and theft in Walmart stores and supercenters, Walmart has adopted a few measures. 

Some of these measures have proven effective and helped reduce theft. A few of them are:

  • Use of Loss Prevention Associates

One of the measures adopted by Walmart is the use of Loss prevention associates. These associates are like other Walmart associates, but they are solely in charge of preventing shoplifting and theft in Walmart stores. 

  • Increase in Surveillance Cameras

Another measure Walmart adopted to stem shoplifting and theft is the increase in the number of surveillance cameras present in Walmart stores. 

Although it has been in existence for a long time, its increase and proper monitoring have proven effective.

  •  Use of Artificial Intelligence 

To further tighten its security at stores and supercenters, Walmart now uses image recognition technology at self-service checkout doors and some other strategic places.

This AI detects items that are put in bags and safes without being scanned by a cashier or at the self-service checkout.

When customers fail to scan an item at the checkout, the AI technology alerts some or one of the officials at Walmart’s store calling for help.

This has helped reduce the rate of theft and shoplifting in Walmart stores drastically.

What happens if you get Caught Shoplifting at Walmart?

If you are caught stealing at Walmart, the litigations you face depend on your age.

Any Under 16 customer caught shoplifting will be reported to his/her parents or guardian to inform them of what their wards have done. The kid will be released after then or will face consequences based on the law in that particular location.

However, if you are older than 16 years, Walmart will keep you in detention using their security and press charges against you.

This is done to discourage others from stealing or shoplifting at Walmart.

Any apprehended shoplifter may spend up to a year in jail and may not be taken to jail at all. It all depends on the local laws of the region. Also, the gravity of the punishment may be decided by the cost of the shoplifted items at Walmart.

The case will also indent the customer’s record and may surface when a background check is run. This may and will likely reduce the arrested customer’s chance of getting a job. 

Does Walmart Call the Cops if a Shoplifter is Caught at Walmart?

It depends. Walmart may decide to call the cops if you are not under 16 years and stole a costly item. 

Though if you are under 16 years, only your parents or guardian will be called to inform them of your actions. 

If you feel you are wrongly accused, see the next heading.

Can footage be requested when you are accused of shoplifting?

If you are accused of shoplifting, you have the right to request footage confirming that.

However, it is the store manager that decides when they show you the footage or not; you may be shown and vice versa.

If Walmart presses charges against you for shoplifting, the footage will be handed over to the police to confirm their accusation. You may have to call your lawyer before you have access to the footage in some cases.

If you are not caught immediately, can you be charged after a period?

Yes. Retail giants and stores like Walmart have the liberty to detain you and press charges if you escape or you are not caught after you shoplifted.

The next time you visit a Walmart store and you are recognized, you will be handed over to the police.

What happens when you are caught Stealing from Walmart?

The punishment for first-time shoplifters is mild. However, if you are caught for a subsequent theft or shoplifting, you will face grave consequences.

Also, stricter measures like banning you from the Walmart store may be put in place.


All stores find ways to increase and boost their revenues. Walmart is not left out.

To increase revenue and curb shoplifting and theft at Walmart stores, Walmart has introduced several means to stop theft.

The latest one is image recognition technology, a proven AI that has helped Walmart to track shoplifting and reduce it as well. Other means are the increase of surveillance cameras in the store, the use of loss prevention associates, and many more.

Walmart may also include the police if a shoplifter is caught and may be charged in court. Everything rests on the local laws of the location.

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