One of the newer products to come onto the tag removal market is the mini Pocket Detacher. There are a lot of questions being asked about this device, so we’ll attempt to address some of those here. Basically, it’s a portable magnetic detacher that’s opens most (but not all) types of RF tags. Even though the magnetic force is not as powerful as the Golf SuperLock Detacher (FX7), it measures a tiny 58mm (2.3″) in height, with a 22mm (0.9″) diameter, making it much smaller and easier to carry. It weighs about 200 grams (about 0.5lbs), and is reported to measure between 5,000 and 6,000 Gauss.
First off, let’s take a look at a YouTube video which demonstrates some of the security tags this little pocket rocket can remove:
There is clearly a certain degree of trade-off with this product in terms of its portability versus the strength of the magnet. The video shows that it’s not as easy to remove the pins from some of the tags, and it does not work at all on the larger golf-type (rounded) security tags. However, it seems the technique to open some of the tags (by using a light tap when placed onto the magnet) can benefit in the aid of its removal.
Where did the product originate?
We tried to find out who invented this device, mainly because it doesn’t seem like the type of product Checkpoint Systems (manufacturers of RF based security systems) would supply to the market, as it makes it easy for shoplifters to defeat some of their security tags. SenTech appears to be one of the first to market with a device called the ‘hand-held magnetic detacher, with black lanyard‘. It’s not the same product as the mini Pocket Detacher, but the concept is along the same lines of what is trying to be achieved. One of our industry contacts supplied us with correspondence they made with a Chinese manufacturer of EAS goods, at which point they were trying to negotiate an arrangement for production of a similar device. While we can’t confirm this, after those negotiations failed, it seems that the Pocket Detacher was released only a number of months after this occurred. So, we theorise that the device may have stemmed from the interception of somebody’s intellectual property.
How much does it cost?
Detacher Co. sells the Pocket Detacher at around US$50, plus shipping, it costs less than a standard magnetic detacher, but because of its small size it might be easy to lose. For this reason make sure you loop a lanyard in the small hole located on the device. Also, due to the relatively powerful magnet, it’s best not to use the hole for attaching to a key ring, or any other metal object. It does include a screw-off cap to cover the internal magnet, but the magnetic field can still penetrate this.