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All Commissaries Will Soon Scan IDs

Like we reported in October, you will soon be asked to present your military ID card to be scanned every time you make a purchase at the commissary. The plan, commissary officials told us, will allow commissary officials to track information on who is shopping and where.

The roll-out, which was to happen in batches of 20 stores, should be be finished by mid-January, commissary officials told us this week. About 200 of the 245 stores worldwide are already participating. That means if you aren’t already having your ID card scanned at your store, you will likely soon be seeing a notice like this one seen Dec. 30 at the Fort Campbell, Ky. commissary.

scanning-ID

The system will capture every shopper’s card ID number, rank, military status, branch of service, age, household size, and zip codes of residence and duty station of each shopper. It will not retain name, address, or phone number information, officials said in October.

Commissary officials hope capturing the data can help them better meet the shopping desires of customers.

“In addition to verifying customers as authorized commissary patrons, we’re gaining information that will give us a better understanding of our patrons, allowing the agency to provide the commissary benefit more effectively and efficiently,” said Joseph H. Jeu, DeCA’s director.

The few commissary checkers we’ve spoken to since the announcement think the plan will cut down on a lot of commissary fraud. They said they are constantly shocked by how many non-authorized shoppers or people with expired dependent ID cards attempt to use the commissary. Scanning the ID cards will make sure no non-authorized shoppers get through.

But we are wondering — have you experienced any hiccups in the new system? Do you feel like the transition to scanning IDs has been good and smooth — or do you think it’s causing problems?

About Amy Bushatz

Amy is the managing editor of Military.com’s spouse and family blog SpouseBuzz.com. A journalist by trade, Amy also covers spouse and family news for Military.com where she is an Associate Editor. An Army wife and mother of two, Amy has been featured as a subject matter expert on NPR and in the New York Times. Follow her on twitter @amybushatz.

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