Receipts and Issues Related to Consumer Privacy: What You Should Know

When you run a business, you have to consider a wide array of factors, including how to ensure you protect your customer’s privacy. Due to issues seen recently, there have been some people questioning the security of paper receipts. However, when you consider the other options, you may discover this is often the best, and most secure, selection.

The fact is, there are three basic options when it comes to getting a receipt after a purchase:

  1. Receive a paper receipt

  2. Choose an electronic receipt

  3. Forego the receipt altogether

There are some who make the argument that options two and three are best and safest, and in some cases, they are right. Utilizing an e-receipt, or choosing no receipt at all, are both good for the environment, but when it comes to protecting information, they may not be the most desirable option. Learn why paper receipts may be the safer, more secure option here.

Receiving the Receipt

When you decide to receive an e-receipt, you have to tell the business your email address. While this may not be a security issue in all situations, if you hand over this information, you may be giving it to other organizations besides the one where you are shopping. In many cases, businesses compile information from customers into lists and sell it to other businesses that are looking for an effective way to advertise the business or service they offer. While you may believe businesses aren’t allowed to do this, if you gave the information willingly, then they are completely in their rights.

Mistakes or Typos

Another problem with e-receipts is the possibility of mistakes or typos. If the person manning the POS system enters your information incorrectly, then you don’t get the receipt and you may not be able to return the items you have purchased. Additionally, if someone else has the email that was entered, then they may receive your receipt information. Another issue is that e-receipts are often snagged by spam filters or lost in an over-crowded inbox.

The Issues of Selecting No Receipt at All

If you decide not to get a receipt at all, then there are a number of issues that you may have to deal with. For example, you may not be able to return your items, claim the available rebates, support the tax deductions you want to make or have the ability to check for errors with the transaction. As a result, not choosing any receipt may be the worse option of all.

When it comes to what you should do when faced with the decision of the type of receipt you want, you should always choose a paper receipt. This will provide you with the information you need to fix mistakes, to file taxes and even return unwanted items, if necessary.