GameStops in Philadelphia are fingerprinting people who trade-in


If the movies and TV shows are any indication, selling off stolen goods to pawn shops is a great way to unload them while making a quick buck. However in real life, that happens too and not only are valuable items such as jewelry, phones, cameras, and etc. that are being sold off, but video games as well. After all there is a huge market for second-hand video games which are typically a lot more affordable than brand new. That being said, it seems that GameStop has recently made it a requirement for their customers in the city of Philadelphia to provide them with fingerprints when trading in used games.

Some GameStop stores in Philadelphia are now requiring that people who trade in games provide a fingerprint scan for “certain transactions,” CBS Philadelphia reports today based on conversations with the retailer, local government, police, and shoppers. According to GameStop, it is following a local law that says the retailer is allowed to collect thumbprints. These scans eventually make their way into a database that helps law enforcement nab thieves who seek to use GameStop as a pawn shop of sorts to unload their goods. Philadelphia city solicitor Shelley Smith says that GameStop is not required to collect the thumbprints to abide by the city’s pawnbroker order. “What GameStop does doesn’t meet any of the elements of the definition in the code, so the pawnbreaker ordinance doesn’t apply to GameStop,” she said. The Philadelphia Police Department, on the other hand, tells CBS Philadelphia that GameStop is being proactive by obtaining customer fingerprints and uploading them to a database known as LeadsOnline. Still, GameStop shoppers outside of a store in Philadelphia’s Center City district are not too pleased about the new policy. “I really don’t appreciate it,” one person said. “You fingerprinted me like I’m in a police district. No, I’m at a game store.” Another shopper said, “I think it’s an overreach. It’s going too far.”

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