Self Check Out System Security Scale Enhancement
Original Publication Date: 2002-Jun-11
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2003-Jun-21
Disclosed is a system and method that provides an additional data source for the Self Check Out Security Scale System. Many existing SCO(Self Check Out) systems use a security scale to validate that the item scanned by the customer is the same item that was placed in the bag. Note: the bagging mechanism resides on a security scale. The SCO systems use the security scale to determine if the item that was placed on the scale falls into a range of acceptable limits that are calculated for the particular item. A problem exists in that the calculated limits for each item are determined by taking a large sample of weights of the same item as they are sold and eventually placed on the bagging platform of the security scale. Depending on the type of item and the amount of traffic of this item through the SCO lanes, it can be quite a long time until the actual weight limits and variances can be calculated. Disclosed is a simple solution to this problem. The solution is to use the front end POS(Point Of Sale) attended work stations as an additional source of data to "seed" the sampling algorithm for the SCO security scale subsystem. All of the weight data for items from the front end POS attended work stations can be aggregated and sent to the SCO system security scale application. The additional source of data reduces the amount of time it takes for the security scale system to establish valid weight ranges for the items sold at the SCO lanes. Typically, the front end POS systems do not need to weigh items as they are being scanned(unless the item is sold by weight). Therefore, a communications mechanism between the SCO system and the front end POS Systems can indicate to the POS systems that the SCO system is in the "Learning Phase" for the security scale subsystem. When the POS systems receive this indication, the POS terminal sales application will periodically prompt the operator(i.e. the cashier) to weigh an item. This could be a simple algorithm to weigh every Nth item and could be configured by the store. As the items are weighed the information is then forwarded to the SCO system and this additional data is used to "seed" the security scale algorithm. When the SCO security subsystem has reached the desired number of samples, it can then communicate to the front end POS systems that the periodic weighing of items is no longer required.