McDonald's Installing DNA Spray-Dousing Security Systems

(Image Credit: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

Thieves Down Under might get a little something extra the next time they rob a McDonald's.

In an effort to crack down on robberies at McDonald's in Sydney, the company has hired SelectaDNA, a British security firm, to install a system that sprays a "non-toxic solution with DNA Code" on would-be thieves on their way out the door of the fast-food outlets.

A handful of McDonald's locations have been hit by thieves in the past couple weeks who snatch more than just a Big Mac. Now the company hopes the newly installed systems will deter robbers from stealing from the Golden Arches.

"A spokesperson for McDonald's said the company will increase the use of ' SelectaDNA' in stores all over the country after a successful trial in their six busiest Sydney restaurants was launched in January last year," The Sydney Morning Herald reported. "The move comes as police ramp up their patrols of local McDonald's restaurants after a spate of robberies across Sydney during the Christmas and New Year period."

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The Intruder Spray solution was introduced in 2008 and "contains a UV tracer and a unique DNA code, linking them irrefutably to the crime scene," according to SelectaDNA's website. To date, SelectaDNA has installed 13 Intruder Spray security systems in McDonald's across Australia.

"Police are able to find SelectaDNA by using a UV Torch. The spray glows bright blue under UV light. By DNA Analysis, an offender can be linked to the premise," said Alice Baillie, marketing manager for SelectaDNA. "A sample the size of a pinhead is all that is required to link an offender to the site."

Once triggered by a thief, the spray will fall onto intruders as they leave a business or home. It can be synced to a panic-button or to any alarm system within a business or home. The solution is both harmless and too small to be seen but will stay on an intruder for weeks, "clinging to fibers and sitting in the creases of the skin," according to the website. Baillie says the spray can linger on clothing for up to six months regardless if it's been washed. For bags, hats and weapsons, the spray will stay on "indefinitely."

With the installation of this high-technology security system, SelectaDNA says it will cut theft and burglaries significantly.

"What makes SelectaDNA so different from other DNA is that normally it is the offender leaving their DNA at the scene," said Baillie. "But this product has the offender taking the scenes DNA with them when they leave irrefutably linking them to the premise."