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My local Sears store may get sued one of these days because it is still printing the full credit card numbers on their sales receipts.
According to the U.S. Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act of 2003, which went into effect on December 4, 2006, the retailers are not allowed to print their customers’ full credit card numbers on the sale receipts in an effort to prevent consumer fraud and identity theft.
Some claim card expiration dates should also not be printed but the law is not clear on that point.
Big merchants such as Rite-Aid, Wendy’s, FedEx, TJX, and Ikea are already being sued for doing exactly that.
100 class-action lawsuits are already filed at the federal courts and district courts (in California, Pennsylvania, and Kansas) for continuing to print full credit card numbers on sales receipts.
The lawsuits contend that the retailers are “wilfully” violating the law, which carry a $1,000 penalty per transaction (not per person). So, if a consumer has bought 10 sandwiches from a store with 10 different receipts displaying the full credit card number, the penalty sought would be $10,000.
To prevent the onslaught of these new lawsuits, VISA started to demand its vendors back in 2003 to accept new machines that print only the last four digits of a credit card number. That still remains the legally accepted practice but I personally see quite a few stores still printing their sales receipts the old fashioned way.
I guess it’s time to have a friendly talk with the Manager of my Sears store…