A very expensive true story
Many years ago, nameless Australian Univeristy, but lets just say it was in NEW SOUTH WALES.
It was the mid 90's and the uni was tranisitioning to the 20th Century by installing a new-fangled electro-gismological barcode system for the library. It was also used for the Student ID cards, which gave you access to to buildings, computer labs etc. The card used a 1-D barcode; you can see where this is going, but it got hilariously worse. The library used a self-checkout system for the new barcode system. Wonderfully efficient, they didn't need to pay human librarians to check books out! Glorious extravaganza of modernity ahoy!
The Students UNION was also part of the scheme, as scanning your card at food outlets and stores on campus gave you the student discount. No doubt some bean-counter figured that with everyone on the same database, they would save $23.47 off the annual budget!
Unfortunately, the same beancounters left the publicity to said Student Union, staffed by, well, amateurs and cushion-tossers who didn't know what a barcode actually does. To advertise the scheme they put posters made of laminated plastic (uh-oh) up ALL OVER campus, with a picture of the new cards. The picture on the card was not obscured, the barcode was not blurred out, and the card in the poster was life-size. The card in the photo was also the card of the student union president. OOPS...
In the next day or two, the student union president borrowed about 3,500 books from the library.
They put up new posters pleading for the books back, and maybe they got 1 or 2...