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New Philadelphia GameStop Policy Requires Customer Fingerprints When Trading In Games

By Steve Tawa

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – The big video game retailer, GameStop, is now requiring its customers in Philadelphia, but not in the suburbs, to provide a fingerprint scan on certain transactions.

When GameStop buys used video games from customers, the chain says it is following a local law that allows the store to collect thumb prints, which go into a database to help law enforcement track down thieves who fence stolen goods.

City Solicitor Shelley Smith says, however, the city is not requiring GameStop to abide by the pawnbroker’s ordinance:

“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.”

Folks outside a GameStop in Center City tell KYW Newsradio they were not thrilled with the company policy for anyone selling used games to the store:

“I really don’t appreciate it. You fingerprinted me like I’m in a police district. No, I’m at a game store.”

“That is a little absurd, it’s just a video game.”

“I think it’s an overreach. It’s going too far.”

“I know that it only happens to people who go to jail, they get fingerprinted.”

“When I went, I got my finger scanned when he broke it out and said ‘I need your fingerprint,’ I said, ‘for what’?'”

The Philadelphia Police Department says the company is being proactive by storing fingerprints in a secure database – LeadsOnline – which is the nation’s largest online investigation system.

 

 

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