SEOUL, March 23 (Korea Bizwire) — The increasing number of unmanned stores and kiosks following the spread of the coronavirus pandemic is leading to security problems.
The police recently arrested a couple in their teens who had stolen approximately 18 million won (US$16,000) worth of goods by breaking into ice cream stores and other unmanned vendors 33 times.
Last month, a person was arrested for throwing chairs and trying to break a washing machine at an unmanned laundomat.
“The word ‘unmanned’ offers a sense of assurance and safety to those who end up breaking into unmanned stores,” said Oh Yoon-sung, a criminology professor at Soonchunhyang University.
“They believe that as long as they keep their hats and masks on, even CCTV footage won’t be able to stop them from committing a crime.”
In response, store owners are installing additional locks on automated cash registers, as well as anti-theft devices and CCTV cameras to prevent potential burglaries.
With break-ins on the rise, the police are advising store owners to set up an entry system that requires identification of all visitors by scanning a credit card or other means of identification.
Experts, however, claim that entry systems are not enough. “A complex entry procedure may take a toll on sales,” Prof. Oh said.
Lina Jang (email@example.com)