Every office has an anonymous, agile employee who steals other people's delicious food from the communal kitchen. Those delicious meatballs you made for lunch? Gone. That bottle of gatorade you brought to work because you're a little hungover from happy hour the night before? Vanished. Maybe you've been the victim of such an offense, or maybe you're the office perpetrator.
A New Solution for Catching the Office Lunch Thief
Catching your office lunch thief can be a difficult endeavor, but security firm ADT wants to change that. Currently they are working on an office fridge security camera that sounds like the perfect solution. The prototype uses a mobile signal to send high-definition images from the fridge "that cut out as soon as the fridge door was closed," reports The Guardian. And when someone comes near the device, the owner of the food is sent an image and a warning email.
Workplace food theft is more commonplace than you'd think: A survey from ADT found that 29 percent of U.K.-based employees have had their lunch stolen from them at some point. A separate survey by online grocer Peapod found higher numbers, with 71 percent of employees admitting their food has been stolen at work and 40 percent of those living in urban areas saying they've taken food that did not belong to them. And it's not just food, as 31 percent of the 2,000 workers surveyed by ADT said their favorite mug had been jacked by someone.
Is the Security Device Really Worth the Effort?
These acts of petty theft certainly raise questions about human morals, but the security camera raises a different ethical question: Is it worth knowing which colleague swiped your food?
If your answer is yes, then there's some bad news. It appears the ADT device isn't being produced for mainstream use. But all is not lost — victims of food theft can take a page from a man named Ted who took justice into his own hands and used a nanny cam to find his office's food thief. Just be warned: According to The New York Post, Ted got fired after his company learned of his vigilante food cop ways.