The old-fashioned practice of allowing some customers to hold house accounts at Cronig’s Market will be getting a high-tech twist in the coming weeks, as customers will have to use a fingerprint identification system in order to access their accounts.

The grocery store offers house accounts as a courtesy to certain customers, and up until recently the practice caused few problems or disruptions.

But over the past few years some unauthorized people have gained access to some house accounts, according to owner Steven Bernier. Former employees of some businesses have continued to use certain house accounts, while others got unauthorized access to house accounts over the phone, he said.

“House accounts go way back with us, all the way to Main Street Cronig’s [Market]. But the world has changed. To be honest, it is a lot of work to keep house accounts. We have to wait to collect our money, and if someone doesn’t pay we have to chase them down . . . not to mention the security issues,” Mr. Bernier said.

Mr. Bernier said he has heard some complaints about the change from some customers. But he emphasized the new fingerprint identification system is in everyone’s best interest. “This is not to make it difficult for anyone . . . it’s to protect them,” he said.

Anyone with a house account has until April 1 to set up their fingerprint account, after which their accounts will be temporarily deactivated. Customers with house accounts may come in after April 1 and reactivate their account at the front desk at the Vineyard Haven store.

Fingerprint verification will not be required for a vast majority of transactions, which are completed with cash, check, debit or credit cards.