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California S. Ct: Demand for zip code to use credit card is illegal!

sudden valley gunner

Regular Member
Joined
Dec 13, 2008
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16,690
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Whatcom County
Interesting?

I always pay cash and have been asked at certain places for zip code. Never thought about it in this light before. I am going to say no next time just to see what happens. :D
 

marshaul

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Aug 13, 2007
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Fairfax County, Virginia
Interesting?

I always pay cash and have been asked at certain places for zip code. Never thought about it in this light before. I am going to say no next time just to see what happens. :D
I never give a single piece of information that isn't reasonably expected.

I'll give a signature for a credit purchase and type in a PIN for a debit one, but that's about it.

And I don't care how I'm paying; I have yet to admit to owning a phone. :p
 
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MKEgal

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Jan 8, 2010
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in front of my computer, WI
About blippin' time someone stood up to nosy merchants!
Good for her.

In the merchant agreement w/ the credit card companies, they agree that they won't require any more than a signature which matches the one on the back of the card in order to process a transaction. If they ask for more, and particularly if they demand more, they're in violation & Visa/MC will say nasty things to them. If it happens often enoguh, they might lose their ability to accept credit cards.

One more situation in which knowing what the rules actually say can prevent you from being hassled or taken advantage of.

Just last Thanksgiving I was buying something at Penny's & had to educate a clerk.
Apparently she couldn't read the huge blown-up signature on her screen & compare it to the card... kept demanding ID, I kept holding my card up next to her screen so she could make the comparison.
Finally got a supervisor to clear things up.
 

palerider116

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Nov 14, 2010
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572
Location
Unknown
In the grand scheme of privacy, entering a zip code in a gas pump is quite insignificant. Considering all the leaks in that privacy, its minuscule in nature.
 

PT111

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Jul 31, 2007
Messages
2,247
Location
, South Carolina, USA
I am a little confused about the other posts here as I thougt the article said that gas pumps would not be affected and were exempt. I know that some pumps would require you to enter your zip code if you were using your card as a debit card but if you used it as a credit card you didn't have to enter anything, just pay the 10 cents per gallon more. Other than that I have never been asked for my zip code while using my credit card.
 

Mike

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May 13, 2006
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Fairfax County, Virginia, USA
I am a little confused about the other posts here as I thougt the article said that gas pumps would not be affected and were exempt. I know that some pumps would require you to enter your zip code if you were using your card as a debit card but if you used it as a credit card you didn't have to enter anything, just pay the 10 cents per gallon more. Other than that I have never been asked for my zip code while using my credit card.
Yeah, that's what the article says, and yes the statute and court ruling does seem to focus on the "recording" of personally identifyiable info. See http://www.cardreport.com/laws/california/1747-1748-7.html, but note this snip for merchants who either record the info, or, even have a form with blanks to get your info:

"Any person who violates this section shall be subject to a
civil penalty not to exceed two hundred fifty dollars ($250) for the
first violation and one thousand dollars ($1,000) for each subsequent
violation, to be assessed and collected in a civil action brought by
the person paying with a credit card, by the Attorney General, or by
the district attorney or city attorney of the county or city in
which the violation occurred. However, no civil penalty shall be
assessed for a violation of this section if the defendant shows by a
preponderance of the evidence that the violation was not intentional
and resulted from a bona fide error made notwithstanding the
defendant's maintenance of procedures reasonably adopted to avoid
such an error. When collected, the civil penalty shall be payable,
as appropriate, to the person paying with a credit card who brought
the action, or to the general fund of whichever governmental entity
brought the action to assess the civil penalty."

Here is the court ruling: http://www.courtinfo.ca.gov/opinions/documents/S178241.PDF
 

VW_Factor

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Nov 1, 2010
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Location
Leesburg, GA
It is also against the licence agreement with Visa, MC, Amex to demand ID for running a card as well. If you signed the card, that is good enough.
 

mark-in-texas

Regular Member
Joined
Aug 20, 2010
Messages
320
Location
Richmond, Tx
I've worked in retail for more than 20 yrs. Those gas pumps or merchants that ask for zip code are just collecting basic customer demographics. They want to know if they're serving the local area fully and/or if people are coming to one location from a particular area that the corporation might want to open another store. I've entered '00000' before and it still worked.
 

Aknazer

Regular Member
Joined
Mar 6, 2011
Messages
1,760
Location
California
I've worked in retail for more than 20 yrs. Those gas pumps or merchants that ask for zip code are just collecting basic customer demographics. They want to know if they're serving the local area fully and/or if people are coming to one location from a particular area that the corporation might want to open another store. I've entered '00000' before and it still worked.
Odd, I've entered in the wrong zip before (was in the middle of a move and hadn't upaded my debit card info) and it wouldn't work until I reran the card and put in the correct one.
 

OldCurlyWolf

Regular Member
Joined
Sep 8, 2010
Messages
908
Location
Oklahoma
I've worked in retail for more than 20 yrs. Those gas pumps or merchants that ask for zip code are just collecting basic customer demographics. They want to know if they're serving the local area fully and/or if people are coming to one location from a particular area that the corporation might want to open another store. I've entered '00000' before and it still worked.
Try this one.

While working in Texas, I opened a Bank of Texas account to have a local account. The address on the account was my permanent address in another state.
When buying gas it would ask for the zip code of the account. I would enter the code and the pump would refuse the card as a debit card. I would then run it as a credit card and it would be accepted.:banghead:

Used to tick me off. :cuss:
 

woodye85741

New member
Joined
Nov 14, 2011
Messages
3
Location
Puyallup,WA
zipcode taxation w/o true representation

When shopping around here & when asked for our zipcode in order to calculate sales tax,I often wonder if I were to be pressed to provide actual zip. If true sales tax would increase state revenue,I could show that since I frequented their establishment and that I increased their own revenue ?
 

since9

Campaign Veteran
Joined
Jan 14, 2010
Messages
6,964
Location
Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA
Let's roll againt all those merchants woith those silly zip code verification protocols at gas stations etc.!!!!
California Supreme Court Rulings are not actionable here in Colorado. Do you have an idea for remedy, here? Regardless, I don't see how it's "Unconstitutional." That's a stretch.

The merchant's employment of zip code validation is consistent with the merchant / charge card terms of agreement. In fact, complete addresses are required for online ID validation, even if it's for a service, such as Vonage or Ooma.

On the other hand, Mastercard still has a reporting function on its website where you can report any over-the-counter merchant who requires you show ID for purchase. In fact, you can report them simply for asking. I carry a printout of the web site on which you can report them in my pocket, and I've asked to see managers on six occasions, showing them the form, and stating plainly, "I appreciate your being willing to take the time to see me about this manner, but I'll be reporting the contract terms violation anyway, simply for the record. I'm sure little will come of it from this one incident, but please do not let it happen again."

Of the six managers, one was stupid enough to start yelling at me to leave her store. I contacted her superiors, and relayed the incident.

She was fired.

Smart store owners know how important it is to follow the rules, and avoid treating customers following the rules as "the enemy."
 

eye95

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Jan 6, 2010
Messages
13,539
Location
Fairborn, Ohio, USA
Odd, I've entered in the wrong zip before (was in the middle of a move and hadn't upaded my debit card info) and it wouldn't work until I reran the card and put in the correct one.
I have had a similar experience. I assumed that this was a protection against the use of stolen cards. The thief likely does not know the zip of the card's owner.

Zip code, by itself, does not constitute PII. Thousands of folks have the same zip. I don't get why folks object to providing it. It just might stop a few illegal uses of their stolen cards. Yeah, they'll get the money back (if the illegal use is noticed and if they go through the hassle of making a claim), but it is far better to avoid the theft in the first place.

To me, this should not be a matter of law. The Liberty stance, IMO, is that this should be a matter of contract law between the card issuer, the merchant, and the card user. The card issuer should appreciate that they would pay fewer fraudulent claims. The merchant should appreciate that he will have to fight for fewer reimbursements. And the card user should appreciate that he will have to fight for the removal of fewer fraudulent charges. It's win-win-win--until the government and the courts stick their noses in, reducing Liberty.

Funny how we want the courts and the government to step in to resolve our pet peeves, but generally want them out of our lives.
 

eye95

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Jan 6, 2010
Messages
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Location
Fairborn, Ohio, USA
When shopping around here & when asked for our zipcode in order to calculate sales tax,I often wonder if I were to be pressed to provide actual zip. If true sales tax would increase state revenue,I could show that since I frequented their establishment and that I increased their own revenue ?
I've seen zip code used to calculate sales tax when purchasing online, but never at a brick & mortar.

On a related note, whenever I order from walmart.com, I have them deliver to the Wetumpka store. I refuse to pay Bobby Bright's and Todd Strange's 10% tax that I would have to pay if I had the item delivered to my home. Yeah, I end up spending more in gas, but I want a city with a more reasonable (still too high) sales tax to benefit from the sale.
 

Metalhead47

Regular Member
Joined
Apr 20, 2009
Messages
2,812
Location
South Whidbey, Washington, USA
Cash is king. Checks for larger purchases next best thing.
Cash is fake, and checks are antiquated. If the money isn't worth the paper it's printed on in the first place, why even pretend? I'll stick with plastic for everything and not bother with the ruse at all. At least if my wallet gets lost or stolen I have some recourse to actually recover my "money," once cash is gone its gone.

I'm with eye95 on the rest. This isn't a govt issue, it's private entities looking out for their own (and your) interests, trying to prevent fraud by requiring id or zip codes. I've only ever seen the zip code thing at gas pumps too, and there it functions similar to a PIN, to verify the card user. And I've never seen any place take any record of my id when carded for a purchase, they're just looking to see that the names & faces match.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

Metalhead47

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Joined
Apr 20, 2009
Messages
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Location
South Whidbey, Washington, USA
I'll betcha my 'fake' dollar is just a good as your 'virtual' dollar. I'll also betcha that my 'fake' dollar is accepted everywhere and your 'virtual' dollar is not accepted everywhere. If they do not accept cash, well, they lost business, but I'll betcha when push comes to shove they'll take the cash. I'll betcha that when the power goes out a business will take my 'fake' dollar, how about your 'virtual' dollar. Private transactions between individuals usually are 'cash or check' only, 'virtual' dollars are rarely accepted by individuals.

As to checks, antiquated, you bet, but they are still accepted in some businesses I use that take 'cash or check' only, 'virtual' dollars not accepted. Like my deer meat processor.

I give it (zip code) every time it is asked for, on the rare occasions that I use 'virtual' dollars. I'm in the phone book, not a secret around my neck of the woods.
Not quite, more precise to day your "fake" dollar is just as fake as my "virtual" dollar, I'm just skipping the whole pretense of it actually existing or having existed in the first place. icon_mrgreen.gif My "virtual" dollar is accepted anywhere I want to be, MORE places than yours actually, since few online merchants will accept your "fake" dollar. If they do not accept my "virtual" dollar, they loose my business. My side seems to be winning on that. Private transactions of any size, I'll use PayPal or the like, since again I'm protected against fraud or theft.

And when the power goes out... there are these things called "generators" that most businesses of any size usually have, to keep them "virtual" dollars flowing. And if the power really goes out... I have all I need for a short duration. For a long duration, well, that's what my stash of silver (that is, ACTUAL money) is for. Lead & brass will often work too.
 
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