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View Full Version : Phone always setting off anti-theft alarms


AlphaWolf
12-12-2005, 06:57 PM
Anybody know what to do about this? Every store I walk into or out of I always set off those anti-shoplifting devices that beep or humm really loud when people steal stuff, and it is caused by my new phone. There are some times where it doesn't happen, but most of the time it does. Gets a bit annoying.

I went to a sprint store and it set off their alarm, and I told the sales guy that I wanted to know if something can be done about it, and he said nothing can be done. But I am not one to put all of my trust into sales people. I can't help but wonder if there is some solution available.

sitlet
12-12-2005, 09:16 PM
i highly doubt its your phone. sprint would not put out a phone that sets off every theft alarm. actually, you need a special magnetic tag to set those off, and sprint phones have nothing like that. you probably left the tag on your belt or shoes or something. its not your phone

Sanyo7400
12-12-2005, 09:31 PM
that happened with a pair of my shoes before. there were no tags on it, but apparantly made into the soles. the guy had me take my shoes off and ran them across the little thing at the checkout that deactivates those things and i never had the problem again....

AlphaWolf
12-12-2005, 09:32 PM
i highly doubt its your phone. sprint would not put out a phone that sets off every theft alarm. actually, you need a special magnetic tag to set those off, and sprint phones have nothing like that. you probably left the tag on your belt or shoes or something. its not your phone

It is definitely the phone. In fact twice I have just waved it between the two panels and it goes off without any part of my body other than my hand going through it. Unless one of those tags is buried in my skin somewhere, it is definitely for absolute certain caused by the phone.

This is also day number four that this has happened while going to the mall.

kravinravin
12-12-2005, 10:21 PM
I've had it happen to me a few times before, and I know it had nothing to do with my clothes, shoes or whatever....it's just a glitch but sometimes it happens...

derango1
12-12-2005, 10:31 PM
Wow, that's just bizarre. I've never had anything like that happen to me. Sorry to hear that, but I don't think anything could be done beside maybe trying to exchange it.

ziggy4500
12-12-2005, 11:04 PM
my old laptop used to do that as well.

jes
12-13-2005, 01:39 AM
See the Samsung forum. Someone with an A900 is having the same problem setting off alarms.

samseed101
12-13-2005, 02:08 AM
i highly doubt its your phone. sprint would not put out a phone that sets off every theft alarm. actually, you need a special magnetic tag to set those off, and sprint phones have nothing like that. you probably left the tag on your belt or shoes or something. its not your phone

I am going to have to disagree with you here. My A900 is setting it off at certain stores as well. I absolutely 100% guarantee that it is the phone that is causing it and nothing else. I tested the theory by leaving it in the car when I was back in the store (1 hour later).

nenne2000
12-13-2005, 09:11 AM
I know for a fact its the phone..Everytime I walk into the Gap and stored like that the alarm goes off. The security guard said it was my phone and Im pretty positive its the phone

fl00d_pr0z
12-13-2005, 09:12 AM
I ALWAYS set off those alarms as I'm walking and and out of stores ! It's at the point where I laugh everytime. People always stop what their doing and look at me, LoL. If it's not my phone, I don't know what it would be. I don't wear shoes with steel in them, I don't have a pace maker or anything.

At some stores, the employees just simply ask if I/we have a cell phone, apparently they know these set them off all the time.

AlphaWolf
12-13-2005, 09:57 AM
Wow, that's just bizarre. I've never had anything like that happen to me. Sorry to hear that, but I don't think anything could be done beside maybe trying to exchange it.

You think sprint would allow an exchange for that reason, without me getting a refurb?

josh33_unc
12-13-2005, 10:02 AM
there is starting to be multiple threads on this, it is becoming a big issue with the phone

http://www.sprintusers.com/forum/showthread.php?t=84341

sitlet
12-13-2005, 10:12 AM
well i must say thats pretty bizzare. again, though, i dont think that sprint puts any of those anti theft tags in the phones, since most sprint stores dont have the alarms anyways. so it has to be soemthing defective in the phone or battery thats causing it. maybe you guys should take the phones in and see if you could exchange them and see if the new phone does it as well

fl00d_pr0z
12-13-2005, 10:33 AM
I don't think there's anything defective in the phones at all.

the2ndflood
12-14-2005, 04:35 AM
Anybody know what to do about this? Every store I walk into or out of I always set off those anti-shoplifting devices that beep or humm really loud when people steal stuff, and it is caused by my new phone. There are some times where it doesn't happen, but most of the time it does. Gets a bit annoying.

I went to a sprint store and it set off their alarm, and I told the sales guy that I wanted to know if something can be done about it, and he said nothing can be done. But I am not one to put all of my trust into sales people. I can't help but wonder if there is some solution available.


You could always cover your phone in aluminum foil when you go into stores.

fl00d_pr0z
12-14-2005, 07:34 AM
:lmao:

NASCAR14FAN
12-14-2005, 07:57 AM
I used to work for CVS Pharmacy as a Shift Supervisor and some cell phones do set off those devises I know from personal experience.

aitech
12-14-2005, 01:57 PM
Those "high-tech" theft alarms work by using passive induction. The posts (sometimes tiny wires hidden in the gate) transmit a specific frequency which hits you and everything on you. Some parts of your body absorb the radiation (Radio waves, relax :) ) and other parts of you/things your carrying reflect it, some changing it during reflection others not.

Now the "magic tag" retailers use is simply a passive antenna which reflects the signal back a very specific/known way which shouldn't ever happen 'in the wild'. The system is constantly analyzing the return signals, and when it sees this specific patern sets of the buzzer.

When you de-activate the tag, usually what happens is the de-activator transmits a rather strong (hence the 'no credit cards on counter' sign you sometime see) radio wave in the proper freq that actually burns/melts/chemically alters a very small peice of the "passive antenna 'magic tag'" so the reflected freq is no longer the same.

It's actually a very delicate system and is very easily circumvented by anyone knowing anything about radio/EE theory. That is why they have started hiding the tags inside everything from the manufacturers now. Still easy to defeat though.

Anyway, hopefully your still reading.... your cell phone is obviouslly a radio transmitter/receiver, etc. And the make-up off all those circuits/amplifiers creates it's own type of passive (and active) antenna. It just so happens this particular model of phone has some configuration of circuits/metal plates, whatever, that reflect back the signal close enough to what certain systems are listening for that it sets off the alarm.

No huge conspiracy, and most likely the phone. There are all kind of very technical signal radiation/reflection/induction tests done on RF equipment during R&D. Either this didn't manifest itself, or nobody noticed since checking for all types of anti-theft alarms I'm sure is not a high priority for them.

If you want to stop it, get one of those $0.50 stick-on antenna things they used to sell for $20 to improve reception, and slide it behind your battery (don't take the sticky tape off). That should alter the reflection enough to not have it go off anymore... and potentially increase signal reception to the tune of $19.95... {joke} ;)

Merry X-mas. :wavey:

Sprintman
12-14-2005, 05:53 PM
Anybody know what to do about this? Every store I walk into or out of I always set off those anti-shoplifting devices that beep or humm really loud when people steal stuff, and it is caused by my new phone. There are some times where it doesn't happen, but most of the time it does. Gets a bit annoying.

I went to a sprint store and it set off their alarm, and I told the sales guy that I wanted to know if something can be done about it, and he said nothing can be done. But I am not one to put all of my trust into sales people. I can't help but wonder if there is some solution available.

I'm confused. You think your phone is setting off the alarm, and not the other stuff in your pockets?

aitech
12-14-2005, 06:09 PM
I'm confused. You think your phone is setting off the alarm, and not the other stuff in your pockets?

As it says above....

f you want to stop it, get one of those $0.50 stick-on antenna things they used to sell for $20 to improve reception, and slide it behind your battery (don't take the sticky tape off). That should alter the reflection enough to not have it go off anymore... and potentially increase signal reception to the tune of $19.95... {joke}

And yes, it most likely IS his cell phone. Coins, keys, etc. would not be capable of producing the complexity of the reflected signal required.

As an aside, always check your pants/shirts well... they have now started to sew the tags into seams/in tags attached to the clothes, etc. I found one sewn into my tag on a new pair of jeans that they never de-activated.

2 seconds in the microwave, and all was fine.. ;)

AlphaWolf
12-14-2005, 09:01 PM
I'm confused. You think your phone is setting off the alarm, and not the other stuff in your pockets?

I am absolutely positive it is. See post #4.

renizay
12-16-2005, 10:54 AM
rub a magnet over the entire phone and remove the battery and do the same...u mite have sum sort of security tag still on it for some weird reason... OR u can put aluminum foil on the inside that way ull never beep =) hehe.. a lil trick.

cnynctry
12-16-2005, 02:15 PM
Try turning the phone off and see if it still happens. Remove the battery and walk in and out and try and see if it's phone (no power) or battery (by it's self). Maybe you can narrow it down to one part or the other.

fl00d_pr0z
12-16-2005, 02:39 PM
And what would that accomplish ? Not like anyone can remove the part that's setting off the alarms.

jhardin1
12-16-2005, 08:39 PM
I have a friend that was always setting of the gates at CompUSA, Walmart, BBuy, ect. Other than being annoying, it was kinda funny ;) A guy at compUSA told us this happens because the systems have drifted of freq, and / or have the gain (sensativity) truned up too high. The guy was nice enough to let us do a process of elemination to determine the offending item - which turned out to be something in the heels of both shoes. The used one of those wands to 'wand down' the heel of each shoe and the problem has not come back since.

aitech
12-16-2005, 09:07 PM
Wow... I went through such a detailed explanation and offered a working solution and people are still asking?? :confused: I have a masters in EE and have worked on the checkpoint systems years ago, if that helps maybe?? :indiff:

oiqxpio
12-16-2005, 10:09 PM
Wow... I went through such a detailed explanation and offered a working solution and people are still asking?? :confused: I have a masters in EE and have worked on the checkpoint systems years ago, if that helps maybe?? :indiff:
I think I read your previous post incorrectly. You want us (yeah, it's happened to me, as well) to nuke our phones in the microwave for two seconds? I'm sorry but it's difficult to for me to even think of such a hilarious act! I'm not mocking, or what think you, but I wouldn't think that much people would be willing to go along with your suggestion. But I speak only for myself.

aitech
12-17-2005, 01:40 AM
I think I read your previous post incorrectly. You want us (yeah, it's happened to me, as well) to nuke our phones in the microwave for two seconds? I'm sorry but it's difficult to for me to even think of such a hilarious act! I'm not mocking, or what think you, but I wouldn't think that much people would be willing to go along with your suggestion. But I speak only for myself.

Lol.. :lol: NO Don't do that! The suggestion was get one of those sticky antenna things they sold on TV for $19.95 to increase reception.. (but can now be found for $0.50 anywhere) and slip it behind the battery...

I nuked the tag in my jeans.. :deal:


If you want to stop it, get one of those $0.50 stick-on antenna things they used to sell for $20 to improve reception, and slide it behind your battery (don't take the sticky tape off). That should alter the reflection enough to not have it go off anymore... and potentially increase signal reception to the tune of $19.95...

wxboss
12-17-2005, 06:19 AM
Those "high-tech" theft alarms work by using passive induction. The posts (sometimes tiny wires hidden in the gate) transmit a specific frequency which hits you and everything on you. Some parts of your body absorb the radiation (Radio waves, relax :) ) and other parts of you/things your carrying reflect it, some changing it during reflection others not.

Now the "magic tag" retailers use is simply a passive antenna which reflects the signal back a very specific/known way which shouldn't ever happen 'in the wild'. The system is constantly analyzing the return signals, and when it sees this specific patern sets of the buzzer.
There are RFID tags (http://www.spychips.com/rfid_overview.html) used by suppliers/manufacturers that do transmit (Active) RF. Depending on the frequency and sensitivity of the readers at a particular store, it isn't out of the realm of possibility that any RF transmitting device could set off an alarm.

hookedonitunes
12-17-2005, 11:40 AM
Wow... I went through such a detailed explanation and offered a working solution and people are still asking?? :confused: I have a masters in EE and have worked on the checkpoint systems years ago, if that helps maybe?? :indiff:
Well aren't we special? The more suggestions, the better. It certainly doesn't hurt.

AlphaWolf
12-17-2005, 01:09 PM
Wow... I went through such a detailed explanation and offered a working solution and people are still asking?? :confused: I have a masters in EE and have worked on the checkpoint systems years ago, if that helps maybe?? :indiff:

Trying to find one of those things without paying more than $5 for em :D

Not even fry's electronics seems to carry them, and they carry everything. That kinda indicates to me that those don't really extend your signal, but it would be worth paying only a few dollars for to get those alarms to stop going off. Not that this phone needs an extension though, it gets a perfect signal pretty much anywhere I go.

Also not to say that those things are the biggest joke of a phone accessory ever, the biggest joke are those little ring things that are supposed to block radiation from your phone going to your ear. I always profile people as suckers when I see them with those :D

FloorMatt
12-17-2005, 01:48 PM
Ok, whoever's phone is setting off these alarms.....I want to hear what store this was, and LOOK at the anti-theft gates......I want to know what company makes them.

The phone tranceives on frequencies MUCH higher than any of the anti-theft systems use. Maybe the A900's (and whatever other phone) antenna can actually retransmit the proper signal, to the Anti-theft system's receiver.....Hmm.

P.S. I haven't had this happen to me......yet.

rip
12-17-2005, 01:53 PM
I don't think there's anything defective in the phones at all.


Actually it is the phone. Let me explain a little.

This is what is now called RFID. This technology is not new but has been used in the security industry for years. Basically it is a resistor with both ends connected by a loop of wire, creating an antenna. The panels you walk through create a magnetic field. The problem is with a circuit in your hand set. When you take a resistor and connect the ends with a loop of wire then emit a magnetig field in its presence, the resistor will charge. And eimt a magnetic field of its own through it's loop of wire (antenna) at a diferent frequency, dependant on the resistors value. Now a reciever listens for this frequency when it hears this frequency it sound an alarm. This is what is happening with your phone. Your phone may work just fine but it is defective. To deactivate this RFID tag you simply place it near a very strong magnetic field and the resistor is "burned out". But DO NOT do this with your phone as your phone will be "burned out" also. Read fried, toast, smoked, very unusable.

FloorMatt
12-17-2005, 02:02 PM
That's just the thing......we need to figure out WHAT type of system is getting set off.

Not everyone uses RFID, yet...

aitech
12-17-2005, 02:14 PM
That's just the thing......we need to figure out WHAT type of system is getting set off.

Not everyone uses RFID, yet...

Exactlly. Actually is very rare, and I don't yet know of 1 retailer that does, to find an active RFID system in place. This is emerging technology and I do not believe it is deployed outside of warehouse logistics, etc.

The $19.95 signal reception stickers have to be in the top 10 scams of the late '90s along with those rings.. ;) But they are a metalic paint sprayed into an antenna pattern which will slightly change the reflected signal from your phone. I'll look around, I had a stack of 50 or so buried in some box awhile ago, if I find them, I'll PM you.

rip
12-17-2005, 10:25 PM
Exactlly. Actually is very rare, and I don't yet know of 1 retailer that does, to find an active RFID system in place. This is emerging technology and I do not believe it is deployed outside of warehouse logistics, etc.

The $19.95 signal reception stickers have to be in the top 10 scams of the late '90s along with those rings.. ;) But they are a metalic paint sprayed into an antenna pattern which will slightly change the reflected signal from your phone. I'll look around, I had a stack of 50 or so buried in some box awhile ago, if I find them, I'll PM you.

The technology is not "just emerging", we were using it over 10 years ago when designing factory security systems for cars and trucks. What has been in the news lately is just a new aplication for a tried and true technology. Also most video stores use RFID, Walmart uses RFID. The technology is and has been used in many places for years, many alot longer thn you would think.

The point is if your phone is setting off these RFID systems, there is a problem with your phone. One thing you may want to do is remove the battery and pass it through the sensors. If the alarm does not sound then pass the phone WITHOUT the battery in it through and see what happens.

aitech
12-17-2005, 11:23 PM
The technology is not "just emerging", we were using it over 10 years ago when designing factory security systems for cars and trucks. What has been in the news lately is just a new aplication for a tried and true technology. Also most video stores use RFID, Walmart uses RFID. The technology is and has been used in many places for years, many alot longer thn you would think.


Let me re-phrase. Active RFID technology used in EAS security devices is a NEW and emerging use for the technology. I do not know of 1 mass retailer that uses battery operated/active RFID EAS tags on their products.

Walmart uses active RFID tags on a per container/per pallet basis in their large distribution warehouses and requires their large distributors to tag shipments with active RFID so they can integrate into their logistics systems. Walmart does NOT use active RFID tags on individual products in their stores. They utilize the same PASSIVE AM or RF tags such as Checkpoint, etc. that everyone else uses.

While I haven't been in a video store in awhile, I am quite sure they also are still using the passive EAS tags.

ACTIVE RFID tags are very expensive and are emerging in per product taging use. There are still ethical/law issues with having things actively tagged with an RFID tag that you take home with you also. If you know of a mass retailer using active RFID tags now, please provide a link. :Popcorn2:

Gary G. Little
12-17-2005, 11:36 PM
Last time I looked, cell phones are nothing but full duplex radios. There are two components to a transmitted radio signal ... a magnetic and an electrical. So yes ... an active cell phone could indeed set off a poorly calibrated and or faulty anti-theft detector in a store.

So the next time it happens, turn your cell phone off.

Gary

aitech
12-17-2005, 11:36 PM
From Chekpoint Systems Inc. (Ranked 2nd in the world for EAS products).......

"All of Checkpoint’s EAS tags and labels contain a passive resonant
electronic circuit, which gives retailers the option of combining
hard tags and disposable tags and even source tags as part of a
comprehensive EAS program. No other EAS technology offers
as much flexibility for retailers in implementing an EAS program
that meets their unique needs."

Gary G. Little
12-17-2005, 11:48 PM
Hmmm ... I'll defer my answer to aitech and rip ... their's were much more cognitive and thorough. And any one that puts their phone in their microwave at ANY setting please let us know so we can nominate you for the next Darwin awards. :)

Gary

AlphaWolf
12-17-2005, 11:51 PM
Ok, whoever's phone is setting off these alarms.....I want to hear what store this was, and LOOK at the anti-theft gates......I want to know what company makes them.

The phone tranceives on frequencies MUCH higher than any of the anti-theft systems use. Maybe the A900's (and whatever other phone) antenna can actually retransmit the proper signal, to the Anti-theft system's receiver.....Hmm.

P.S. I haven't had this happen to me......yet.

Every store that I have gone to that has one of these anti-theft systems has been set off by my Sanyo MM-9000. It even sets off the one at the sprint store.

A lot of you guys probably don't believe me, but as sure as the sky is blue it is definitely being caused by my phone and only by my phone.

rip
12-18-2005, 09:53 AM
With or without the battery? That is the question. Is the sticker on the battery a "foil" sticker as some tend to be? If so peel it of and see what happens.

rip
12-18-2005, 10:02 AM
From Chekpoint Systems Inc. (Ranked 2nd in the world for EAS products).......

"All of Checkpoint’s EAS tags and labels contain a passive resonant
electronic circuit, which gives retailers the option of combining
hard tags and disposable tags and even source tags as part of a
comprehensive EAS program. No other EAS technology offers
as much flexibility for retailers in implementing an EAS program
that meets their unique needs."


Correct, passive is what is used. Wich is the reason why passive is all that I have mentioned. The foil tag security devices are easy to defeat. The RFID based systems are not so easy. As a deguassing unit or dacay unit would be needed, a strong magnetic field basically. Since these are the most readily availabe to the average Joe consumer. These woild probably be the top two choices. Although I'm not sure too many know what a decay unit is. But someone trying to defeat a security system will most likely.

 
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