Olympus has introduced a tracking system to encourage those who find lost digital cameras to return them to their owners.
The so-called yellowtag will be fitted into all Olympus digital cameras. The tag contains a unique email address so, when a camera is found, the finder can send a message to Olympus. The rightful owner will then get an email or text message telling them the camera has been found.
"We wanted to ensure that our customers have peace of mind when they take their camera out and about," said Sara Cubitt, head of marketing at Olympus. This way if someone finds a camera they will know how to return it, she added.
But PC Advisor has spotted a flaw with this system — if you find an expensive digital camera, why should you want to return it to the owner, when you could keep it for yourself?
Olympus has thought of this too, however, and has set up a prize draw system to reward people who return lost cameras, hoping the possibility of winning photographic equipment for themselves will entice them to do the right thing. Of course, they could still be more tempted to take the easier, if dishonest, route of simply keeping the kit they've found.
The prize system could also be used for laptops and PDAs, but PC Advisor thinks that Olympus would be wise to develop security PINs or other identity devices which would prevent lost kit being used by anyone but its owner.