Friends, I've written about this in an earlier post (scroll down three posts if you don't want to click on the link).
It now appears that the real culprit behind the rejection of credit card transactions for such firearms purchases might be First Data rather than Citi Merchant Services. A report on Merchant Talk states that:
"Effective today, First Data has just terminated all of its firearm merchants selling in non face-to-face transactions. For those of you not familiar with credit card processing, First Data is responsible for more than 60% of payment processing in the United States. They have not only terminated many of these legitimate and established merchants but they have done so while holding all outgoing funds. Several banks have followed suit with CitiGroup (NYSE C) immediately jumping on the bandwagon and Bank of America (NYSE BAC) expected to follow.I fully agree with the author of the Merchant Talk post. People, if this is true we need to hammer First Data into the ground. I suggest we all pass the word about this and ask First Data for clarification - they helpfully provide contact names, numbers and e-mail addresses to do so. Let's make our opinion known to them loud and clear. This nonsense cannot, repeat, cannot be allowed to stand.
While I personally don’t own a gun, nor plan to, I respect the rights of people to legally own and legally sell them. While the system isn’t perfect, for major banks and processors to take a stance like this is wrong and illegal. I suspect that the National Rifle Association will follow up with an official response.
Please don’t make this a matter of whether you agree with gun sales or not, it’s not the job of First Data or any such private organization to take this stance. I imagine that the matter will be overturned in court.
Let’s see, what industry is next? People, this is a prime example of my earlier post today and I hope that the government steps in immediately to stop private industry from making such decisions immediately. Whatever your opinion is on firearms, this is only the beginning. Because if this manages to stick, before long your industry may be next."