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barcode data (point-of-sale data, POS data)

This definition is part of our Essential Guide: Understanding and responding to POS malware

Barcode data (sometimes called point-of-sale data) is information from barcode s that is automatically gathered as a consumer's purchases are put through a check-out. Typically, the information gathered would identify which customer bought what products, at what prices, and when and where the transaction took place.

Point-of-sale ( POS ) terminals collect enormous volumes of such data every day. According to a report in Darwin Magazine, the Staples office supply chain collects a gigabyte of data daily from its United States stores alone. After processing, barcode data can be very useful for marketing purposes. For example, a retailer might apply predictive technology software to help them plan when or where to launch a sales campaign, or how to price an item.

This was last updated in March 2011

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