Spotty: What is it and why?
Because losing your valuables costs, on average, a hundred times more than protecting them with Spotty.
Spotty is a unique system (patent pending) that helps you to get your lost items back quickly.
Found items can be entered on our website or even immediately scanned with the finder’s smartphone, and Spotty will then notify you that your item has been found.
Because this is done swiftly, you may still be in the area, so you can get your item back right away instead of having to make arrangements to retrieve it days later.
The finder doesn’t need to go through the inconvenience of taking your item to the police or finding a public building, and it increases the chance that you’ll be notified.
*) 58 min on average? Read the test on our blog.
Do honest finders really exist?
Of course! A test by Reader's Digest shows that 2/3 of finders even return a lost telephone - if they know where to contact the owner.
But often the finder and the owner don’t use the same forum to track back their items – or too late. Many items are never reported because it’s too much hassle for the finder. But now there’s Spotty!
For more background information
What items can I register?
Click on the photo below for many examples of possible items you can register.
Do I really need to register every single item?
In most cases you don't. The majority of our keychains, stickers and other products can simply be attached to the item you want to protect (Label & Go function), as long as you keep a copy of the code. After having lost an item, you can still go to Spotty.eu to register it. Your product documentation should mention if pre-registration is necessary or not.
However, if you DO register your items, you have the advantage of being notified immediately when someone finds it, which might be even before you realise that you've lost it. This can save you an extra round trip to pick up your item.
A second advantage is that, in case of loss, all data with the item's description are automatically published on this page and can be found by anyone via Google or Bing, shortly thereafter. This increases the risk for a finder or a thief if they keep your item.
[+]Spotty is truly safe
The Spotty.eu website uses the latest security standards, but everyone claims that, of course.
Rest assured, nobody can access your data in Spotty and this is why:
- First of all, because you don't have to enter your home address, so it's not in our database for someone to hack.
- The finder who reports your item doesn't see any of your data. No name, no email address, no phone number. We take care of the communication between the both of you.
- Your email address and phone number are protected in our database, using the most modern encryption standards (AES256, US government approved for Top Secret documents, learn more)
In a nutshell: no address, no risk. Still, for those who are really paranoid: most Spotty stickers and tags even don't have to be registered as long as you don't lose your item. In this case, there's no data at all in the Spotty database.
[+]Does the finder see my personal details?
No! First of all, you don't need to enter your addres or other personal details. Even if you do, the finder will only see a page where he can leave his personal details. You will then receive a message from Spotty and will be able to contact the finder yourself.
If the finder wants to remain anonymous too, that is also possible. Spotty will then create a page through which the finder and the owner can communicate.
[+]Why can’t I just write my name, address or phone number on the item?
You can, but it’ll probably look untidy, and you’re not likely to want to give out your personal details on your luggage tag to a burglar who might abuse this information.
Even more importantly, finders abroad will be highly unlikely to want to call you at their expense on your foreign phone number to speak with someone in another language.
[+]I have a problem working with Spotty
Our manual on how to use stickers, tags and vouchers or promo codes can be found here.
Or read our tips in case of problems.
[+]Is the online payment secure on this website?
Absolutely! The payment itself isn’t made directly to Spotty.eu but through Ogone/Ingenico, a leading online-payment company. You can find more information about Ogone here.
[+]What types of stickers and labels are there?
webshop, you can find an overview of all of our products.
[+]What if the finder hasn’t got a smartphone to scan the tag? Or the scanning doesn’t work?
The finder does not need a smartphone to return your item! The code can simply be entered manually via any web browser. Or the finder can ask any person to do it for him/her.
[+]Do finders need a Spotty “app” on their smartphone?
Not at all! The tags work with all existing apps that can scan a QR code (probably they have one pre-installed on their smartphone). They don't even need a smartphone, it can simply be typed into a web browser.
[+]Do I need a smartphone to use Spotty?
No, a computer with an internet connection is sufficient to register your items at Spotty.eu.
[+]Can I also buy the stickers in other shops?
We currently only sell through the Spotty webshop, or work with businesses who offer Spotty products to their customers.
[+]I’ve lost something. What should I do now?
Go to the “My Items” page and click on the button “Report item lost/stolen” next to the lost item. This will automatically publish the necessary information on the Internet so that it can also be found via search engines (Google, Bing, etc.), even in case the item has lost its Spotty code.
[+]What if a finder or thief removes the stickers?
Of course, this means that there is no sticker to scan. However, if you marked your item as lost/stolen, the description you gave of it will be published online.
If your item is found, the finder can use a search engine to match the item’s description, based on its serial number, brand, type, etc., to your item. Thieves don’t like selling items that have been registered at a site such as Spotty, because of the risk of buyers reporting them to the police.
[+]I want an unremovable anti-theft marking
Even after removing the Spotty sticker, your item remains traceable, as described above. If you really want an unremovable code, we have three options. Engraving, etching or tamper resistant stickers.
These systems are suitable for different material: paint, plastic, wood, enamel, leather, glass, etc. Typical applications are theft prevention for bikes, cars, caravans, trailers, lawn mowers, boats, electronic equipment or sports gear. In the Spotty webshop you can find the bike products that are suitable for other applications as well, except for glass
[+]What if I sell a registered item?
Simply leave the stickers on the items. The new owners can register the items themselves under their name (Spotty will first send you an email to check for your permission), or they can remove the sticker if they prefer. In the case of engraved codes, obviously the ownership must be transferred to the new owner.
Or you can simply delete the item from your account, but in that case the new owner can't register it anew using the same Spotty code.
[+]What if I don’t want to spoil the look of my item or there is no place for a sticker?
There are a number of options. For example, on a smartphone, you can place the sticker on the inside. The finder would need to open the device anyway to check the SIM card.
A watch or other small items can be engraved with the unique short code provided by Spotty. Finally, an NFC (near-field communication) tag can be hidden within certain items (e.g. paintings).
[+]Where can I have the code engraved on an item?
In most towns you should be able to find a key-making service or shoe repairer with an engraving machine, or try a jeweller’s for your jewellery.
Or you can do this yourself using an engraving pen or small engraving machine (e.g. Dremel).
[+]What if my item is found in another country?
This makes no difference at all. Our service isn’t limited to a particular country, and our website exists in seven languages. So even during your holiday, you’ll be able to get your items back quickly.
[+]Do I need to pay a yearly subscription?
No, there is no subscription fee.
[+]What is the reward for the finder?
Every finder gets a small reward, to encourage returning an item.
The reward could consist of some stickers or a keytag to protect some of their own items. Three credits are deducted from your balance, to pay for this reward.
We hope you’ll agree that this is a small price to pay for the return of your item.
You may choose to offer an additional cash reward for your more valuable items. This information is stored by Spotty, but the payment itself should be handled directly between you and the finder; Spotty does not mediate in the provision of additional rewards
In some countries a financial reward for the finder is defined by law.
[+]What are “Credits”?
Credits are used to pay for Spotty functions such as:
Instead of re-entering your credit card details for each small transaction, you can purchase credits in packs (e.g. a pack of 10) from our webshop. Credits don’t have an expiration date, so you can use them whenever you like.
Upon the first registration of a purchased Spotty tag (not the free samples), you get 4 bonus credits. This is enough to receive an SMS (1 credit) and to reward a finder (3 credits).
[+]What if the finder and I don’t trust each other?
Most people will simply exchange phone numbers to arrange the return of the item. But you can also communicate anonymously via a private Spotty page that will be known only to you and the finder.
[+]But if I lost my phone, I won’t be able to receive SMS notifications from Spotty?
That’s right! That’s why you can add up to five mobile numbers per account. When registering your phone, you can indicate that – in the event of loss/theft –
SMS notifications should be sent to one of these other numbers (e.g. a phone belonging to your partner or a friend).
In any case, email notifications will also be sent to you.
[+]What about other identifications I applied earlier?
If, for example, your bike is already engraved, or your jewellery is marked with synthetic DNA or other tags, you can add the existing code in the description of your item on Spotty.
Your lost items can then also be found based on these codes. In this way, you’ll have all your item details together in one place.
[+]What is a voucher?
A voucher is a promotional code (e.g. “V_E8R45ER1”), which you might find on a free sticker, a flyer, etc. Depending on the promotion, this code may be used, for example, to activate a free sticker or to obtain a number of credits. If you are logged into Spotty, you can redeem the voucher on this page.
Some promotional codes can only be redeemed by new users, or may not be combined with other actions.
[+]I’ve received a free sticker but can’t use it
Depending on where you received the sticker from, there may be some additional terms that apply. For example, certain free sample stickers can only be used by new Spotty users.
[+]What does Spotty do with my personal details?
In our General Terms and Conditions, you’ll find our complete privacy statement.
[+]In which countries can I order products from the Spotty webshop?
Right now, we ship to Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxemburg and France only, but the other neighbor countries will follow soon.
Subscribe to our blog to get the latest information.
[+]What is a QR code, and what is an NFC tag?
Wikipedia provides more information about QR
codes and NFC technology. And you can search for phones with built-in NFC support.
[+]Can I give one of my tags/stickers to someone else?
Of course! If this person hasn’t got a Spotty account yet, then they can create one and start registering their items immediately.
If they haven’t yet registered any of their own tags/stickers, their first year of Spotty will start from the date of registration of that tag.