Costco wants shoppers to think twice before letting someone borrow their membership card.
Just as Netflix recently cracked down on password sharing, Costco has announced that it is also cracking down on unauthorized use of its memberships.
“We don’t feel it’s right that non members receive the same benefits and pricing as our members,” the wholesale giant said in a statement to Business Insider. “As we already ask for the membership card at checkout, we are now asking to see their membership card with their photo at our self-service checkout registers.”
Insider says Costco employees nationwide have been seen spot-checking membership cards in self-checkout lines, where the bulk of the unauthorized card-sharing takes place.
Costco memberships range from $60 a year for Gold Star and Business cards to $120 per year for Executive membership. The company has nearly 125 million authorized cardholders in the U.S. and Canada which, according to Insider, contributes more to its bottom line than actual sales.
The crackdown is viewed as an effort to boost revenue as consumers cut back on spending due to rising inflation.
Costco also says requiring proof of membership reduces shoplifting.
To combat password sharing, Netflix announced in May that it would limit its viewing to people who live in the same household. Those who subscribe to the streaming company’s standard or premium plans could allow people outside of their household to use their password for an additional $8 per month.