AGs Issue Warning on Merchant Code for Gun Stores

  • A group of 24 AGs led by Montana AG Austin Knudsen and Tennessee AG Jonathan Skrmetti sent a letter to the CEOs of three major credit card companies, American Express, MasterCard, and Visa, expressing their concerns about a merchant category code for firearm stores developed by the International Organization for Standardization, which sets international standards used by companies that process debit and credit card transactions.
  • The letter expresses concerns that the data generated by the code could result in the collection of consumer data and expose gun merchants to potential adverse consequences, which could give rise to potential violations of state consumer protection and antitrust laws that AGs enforce.
  • The AGs also assert that adoption of the code, created by a transnational standard setting entity, exceeds current law enforcement measures imposed by U.S. law on financial institutions to monitor suspicious gun sales and has the potential to infringe on individuals’ exercise of their Second Amendment rights.