Steal This

'Tis the season, ye merry retailers, for shoplifting

As America's retail brands gear up to welcome hordes of holiday shoppers, here's a little something they might keep in mind: One in every 11 people who walk through the door are likely to walk out with at least one item he or she didn't pay for. Given that retailers are likely to lose $119 billion to shoplifters this year (1.45 percent of total sales), it's not surprising that the loss-prevention folks have studied this problem from every angle. That's how we know only 3 percent of shoplifters are "professionals" who'll fence the goods, and most offenders are amateurs whose crimes are ones of opportunity.