Mixed reaction to bill stopping credit card companies from tracking gun, ammo purchases

Reporter: Asha Patel Writer: Paul Dolan
Published: Updated:

Governor Ron DeSantis stopped by Fort Myers on Friday, signing a bill preventing credit-card companies from tracking gun and ammo sales.

DeSantis said the bill would allow people to exercise their constitutional rights without companies raising red flags.

WINK News spoke to people for and against the bill on Friday. Those agreeing with the bill say it’s about time the governor signs a bill protecting those purchasing guns and ammunition. While others said it may slow the police down when it comes to tracking where a gun came from if it’s involved in a crime.

“I truly believe in the open carry,” resident Jack Aliotta said.

As is the case ordinarily when it comes to gun laws, WINK News found split opinions.

“It might make it difficult for law enforcement agencies to track individuals who do things that are wrong,” resident Robin Weaving said.

“Well, being an ex-police officer, I carry,” Aliotta said.

The governor’s signature on the new law clears up Florida’s stance against credit card companies creating specific categories for gun and ammo purchases.

“We’ll be the first state in the country to step up to the plate and prohibit these massive financial institutions from collecting data on you, flagging you, just for basically exercising your right,” Governor DeSantis said.

Nationwide, the three major credit card companies, Visa, Mastercard, and American Express, have said they will categorize sales at gun shops separately.

Advocates said that would make it easier for them to monitor suspicious behavior. A lot of things you buy have their own categories, for example, shoe-shine places or sporting goods stores, but not gu stores.

“So there are both sides to the issue because you don’t want anyone to just be able to follow anybody’s purchases. But if something goes wrong, you really need to have law enforcement to be able to act,” Weaving said.

“You got to protect yourself as much as you possibly can,” Aliotta said.

A release from the Governor’s Office also mentioned that three major credit card companies have said the merchant category codes would allow them to manage risk and combat gun violence by tracking the customers’ behavior. The governor said that’s an outreach and not ok when it comes to customer privacy.

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