Aldi corporation spying on female customers, workers

German weekly Der Spiegel on Aldi

From Der Spiegel weekly in Germany:


Covert Cameras at Discount Retailer

Aldi Store Managers Secretly Filmed Female Shoppers

Store managers in several supermarkets of the Aldi discount chain secretly filmed female customers bending over refrigerators and shelves, according to information obtained by SPIEGEL. Cameras also secretly filmed the cash registers, including payment card readers where customers type in their PIN numbers.

Female customers shopping in Aldi, the German chain of discount supermarkets, were secretly filmed by branch managers, according to information obtained by SPIEGEL. The managers were especially interested in filming women in short skirts and low-cut tops as they bent down to pick out items from refrigerator chests or shelves.

The films were burnt onto CDs and shared with fellow staff. This happened in Aldi stores in Frankfurt, Dieburg and elsewhere in the western state of Hesse.

Today, 6 January 2013, Der Spiegel (translated from the German edition) writes:

The discounter Aldi Süd has spied on its workers secretly, according to a former detective of the corporation. according to SPIEGEL information, the company also continued this monitoring of its employees by detectives after the spy scandal at rival Lidl in 2008. Also hidden cameras were used.

A detective who worked for years for the retail giant describes details of his activities. In addition to the usual monitoring for the prevention of theft by customers need he had to spy on the employees as well, said the man. Aldi Süd has always denied allegations that it monitored its employees secretly as well.

However, the detective told in detail what orders he got and performed. Eg, an Aldi boss in Dornstadt three years ago demanded that he should install mobile miniature cameras above the lockers in the employee locker room. When he refused, he was threatened that he would “lose all security business” if he would not obey. “I was also ordered to report any conspicuous thing. Including if an employee worked too slowly, if I learned about a relationship between employees and if I got to know other details of their private lives, for example with respect to the financial condition of the employees” said the detective.

Australian companies spend millions spying on workers: here.