This policy was adopted by ISO following activist pressure
FRANKFORT, Kentucky (September 21, 2022) – Attorney General Daniel Cameron joined a 24-state coalition to urge banks and the CEOs of three major credit card companies, American Express, Mastercard and Visa, to avoid tracking and monitoring gun purchases and ammunition via merchant category codes. Attorneys General warn that using these codes may violate consumer protection laws, anti-trust laws and the privacy rights of Kentuckians.
“Tracking and surveillance of gun and ammunition purchases puts the information of law-abiding Kentucky gun owners at risk of being misused by those who oppose the exercise. of our Second Amendment rights,” Attorney General Cameron said. “This surveillance policy is part of an ongoing trend that seeks to impose policies on society that cannot be achieved through a democratic process through disguised maneuvers in the marketplace. I will continue to oppose these brazen attempts to take away our rights.
The coalition’s letter follows a decision by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) to create a merchant category code that gun stores will use when processing credit and debit card transactions. This policy was adopted by the ISO following activist pressure, and some credit card companies have already started adopting this new policy.
In their letter, the attorneys general are concerned that using merchant category codes to track purchases of guns and firearms could put law-abiding consumers at risk. They write: “Creating and tracking this data only matters if your institutions plan to use this information to take other harmful actions, such as invading consumer privacy, preventing protected purchases by the Constitution by selectively restricting the use of your payment systems, or otherwise withholding your financial services from targeted “disadvantaged” merchants.
The coalition also shares its concern about financial institutions that shirk their fiduciary duty by putting political outcomes ahead of the welfare of their investors. They write, “Americans are tired of seeing corporate influence used to advance political goals that cannot muster grassroots Democratic support. The Second Amendment is a fundamental right, but it is also a fundamental American value. Our financial institutions should stop lending their market power to those who wish to attack this value.
Attorney General Cameron was joined by attorneys general in Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Hampshire, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee , Texas, Utah , Virginia, Wyoming and West Virginia by sending the letter.
To read the letter, click here