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February 2, 2024

What are the most frequently stolen products in supermarkets?

Article written by: The Veesion team

14 %. This is the increase in the number of thefts recorded in French supermarkets and small stores between 2022 and 2023*. This type of shrinkage represents a serious loss of earnings for the shops concerned. Find out which products are most commonly stolen from supermarkets and how to protect yourself.

The products most commonly stolen from supermarkets

The products most frequently stolen from supermarkets include foodstuffs, hygiene products, cosmetics and fashion accessories:

  • cheese ;
  • meat and charcuterie
  • perfumes
  • fashion accessories (sunglasses, costume jewellery, etc.);
  • make-up products
  • confectionery.

The most common theft techniques used in supermarkets


This is the most common theft technique: hiding items to avoid paying for them. A classic shoplifting technique. Fake bag bottoms, hard-to-reach pockets: thieves compete in imagination to get away without paying. Not to mention the increasingly common practice of “forgetting” the bottom of a bag or trolley at the checkout.

Metal bags are also being used more and more frequently, to prevent anti-theft devices from detecting them. Similarly, a magnet placed inside a pocket or bag can be used to confuse alarm systems.

Use your clothes

Small objects are generally easy to hide in a coat pocket or the sleeve of a jumper. That’s why this technique is so popular with supermarket thieves, particularly in the cosmetics section. The type of products found there (perfumes, lipsticks, foundation, etc.) can be tested on the spot, so manipulation is authorised and some people take advantage of this by not putting the products back on their shelves.

Pram theft

Concealing products under a child’s pushchair is another widespread technique. Often covered in baby’s personal belongings, the temptation is sometimes great to add items thinking that no one will notice.

Changing labels

Swapping product labels to pay less is a form of shoplifting. Less blatant than hiding an item under your jacket, this technique is particularly common with fruit, vegetables and bulk produce. At the time of weighing, the thief sticks on a label of another product, cheaper per kilo, and then proceeds to the checkout. Other dishonest people may also add products after weighing.

How can in-store theft be prevented?

Faced with a resurgence in thefts, there are a number of preventive solutions.

Use anti-theft devices whenever possible

This is the solution most frequently used to prevent shrinkage: anti-theft devices. This system involves installing an anti-theft gate to protect items on sale. The types of anti-theft devices vary depending on the items to be fitted: anti-theft labels (suitable for small items), anti-theft badges (often used to protect ready-to-wear items), anti-theft glasses, anti-theft bottles (in the form of neck bands or on-the-spot anti-consumption devices), etc.

Install surveillance cameras

Always present at shop entrances and exits, security guards are essential for surveillance. They are not infallible, however, as they cannot have their eyes everywhere. That’s why video surveillance systems have become an essential part of almost every retail environment. Placed in strategic areas of shops, surveillance cameras allow you to see exactly what is going on in the aisles.

Relying on AI-intelligent video surveillance

Despite these surveillance systems, the risk of theft remains high. To enhance protection and prevention, Artificial Intelligence (AI) is coming to the rescue of in-store video surveillance. Thanks to an algorithm capable of detecting suspicious behaviour and the gestures of thieves, intelligent video surveillance reinforces the action of surveillance cameras. Analysed in real time, the images are transmitted to the shop manager and/or the shop security manager. If any suspicious gestures are detected, a notification is sent to a telephone, computer or tablet. It is then possible to intervene with the suspect.
As this system is not based on biometric recognition, it respects the anonymity of the people filmed. AI video surveillance allows rapid intervention even before the checkout.
Want to find out more about AI video surveillance? Discover Version, the revolutionary theft detection software, and join the 2,500 retailers who are effectively using this technology!

  • Source: Ministry of the Interior

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