Showing ID when using your credit card

The cashiers don’t have to be forgery experts for it to be reasonably effective. If they check the id, the thief has to get a forged id to use the credit card. This won’t stop a professional ring of thieves, but it will make it harder for less organized thieves.

It’s like locking your house at night. That won’t stop a determined intruder, but it will stop enough opportunistic criminals to make it effective.

  1. You’re a merchant so you know this? Otherwise, I want a cite.*

  2. Law allows liability up to $50. The CC company may decide to waive that, but there is no guarantee.
    *Also, since my card is through my Credit Union, it still gets back to me in terms of less profit for the CU = less advantageous rates.

I apologies for the “could care less” How about reading that as “It’s possible that I could care less, but I care so little that I can’t even be arsed to figure out if I could care less”? :smiley:

Imagine what would happen to the cashier if he checks ID, doesn’t think that it is adequate, and is wrong. Do you think he wants to be in this position? A cashier is not rewarded for stopping thefts that don’t happen and would clearly be punished for stopping transactions that didn’t happen but should have. All to stop fraud that neither the merchant nor the cardholder would actually have to pay for.

Like I said checking ID allows merchants to suppress card usage dishonestly. Unless merchants are deeply misinformed about how credit card acceptance works, there is no other reason for it.

I know this because I have worked at the largest merchant acquisition company in the world for going on 10 years. I’ve managed large merchant bankruptcy risk, designed and sold transaction data analytical products to global merchants, and have provided the financial analysis to support major pricing negotiations. I have worked in just about every part of the business except customer service.

But you don’t have to take my word for it. Just look for the boilerplate card service agreement on the internet, locate the chargeback and fraud procedures, and see for yourself.

The merchants CAN lose their sponsorship from a credit card issuer, but it probably has to take quite a large number of chargebacks before that happens. I was hired by a company as part of a team to clean up their websites, which had such a high occurrance of fake credit card charges that Visa put the company on probation: 6 months to get it to an acceptable level, or no more Visa usage, ever. And in the meantime, no Visa usage. Being an online site without Visa capability is pretty much a death knell. But at the time, we were informed we were one of only two companies this had happened to, so it has to be pretty bad.

In a “perfect world” which still has credit card fraud, I’d support checking IDs, but to be effective at preventing theft there are a few requirements at the point of sale:

[li]Be reasonably sure the ID is real[/li][li]Believe the person showing the ID is in fact the one the ID belongs to[/li][li]Verify the credit card and the ID are issued to the same person[/li][li]Verify that the swiped/electronic information on the credit card is the same as the printed information on the credit card[/li][/ul]
Based on my experience of presenting IDs at bars, airports, sporting events, etc. I suspect that if showing an ID for a credit card transaction were standard, it would consist of one step:

[li]Something that looks like a driver’s license is shown[/li][/ul]
In that case, and if if the steps above aren’t followed (and possibly more, those are just what I could think of right now) then showing an ID for a credit card purchase is just theater. Of course none of that does anything to protect against non-card-present transactions.

I have had my card fraudulently used for card-present transactions, in a foreign country, when I’ve had all copies of the card in my possession. It’s very easy to write new numbers onto the magstrip of a credit card. I don’t know if that requires writing my name, too, or if just the numbers and expiration date can be written. Even so, the cashier where the card was used (two £100 cash advances in a grocery store in the UK) didn’t notice that the swiped number did not match the number on the card. Or possibly the thief printed cards with the correct number, that is also a pretty easy thing to do.

It will be interesting to see what happens in the next year or two following the changes by the recent settlement between merchants and card processors. That coming at the same time as the start of NFC/RFID based phone wallets means things could look very different in 5 years.

My biggest fear with ID checking, even more than stores building yet more detailed databases on their customers, is that it might be treated by the processors like chip & pin was. When chip & pin was new, the processors said it was perfect, so any fraud was the card holders fault, because they must have been insecure with how they handled their card and pin. So when chip & pin was cracked, lots of customers were held responsible for the fraud they genuinely had nothing to do with. I could very easily see card processors and merchants make card holders responsible for fraud when it was indicated that ID was shown.

Where I live in S. California, almost every merchant accepting CC’s expects you to show ID when you pay. Not so with debit cards. My card can be used either way and if I say I’m going to use it as CC, then I invariably am asked to show ID.

BTW I’ve had at least 4 ID thefts over the years with CC’s and I’m happy to have to show ID if it helps slow down some of the crime.

I wrote: “Do you even read this?” on my debit card. It’s only been noticed once.

The following text is from Visa’s Rules for Visa Merchants: Card Acceptance and Chargeback Management Guidelines. Copyright

date is 2007. I got this PDF file from Visa’s web site a couple of years ago; I do not have the original URL.

Merchants also cannot require a minimum purchase for use of credit or check card. I mke it a point to report agents that do.

Since 2010, they’ve been allowed to require a minimum charge of up to $10 for credit card transactions (cite).

Where I work the customer swipes their own card, therefore, I don’t ask. I’ve had a couple people ask if I need to see an ID, and I say, no, you swipe it yourself. My employeer does not have it in the rules that we need to ask for one, and it slows things down. If I, on the other hand, need to swipe it myself for whatever reason, and it says “See ID”, then I will ask. End of story…

Thanks. Note that this only applies for credit card transactions, not debit card transactions. Your site has an ambiguous sentence. The non minimum rule does not apply to stores that accept debit cards. So does that mean that if they take debit cards then they cannot require a minimum for credit and debit card purchases?

My wells Fargo card is a debit and credit card.

I don’t like it if it is a $20 convenience store purchase. I do have my id with me, but that means I have to take it out and show it. I usually don’t get carded for alcohol, but I’m often juggling several things and this is an easy way that I could leave my id at the store.

I really doubt it prevents fraud at all in those situations.

If I’m buying a $1000 TV, I don’t mind. I’m not likely to be listening to an iPod if I’m completing a major transaction.

I’ve seen a sign in the local post office that the USPS requires that credit cards be signed to be valid, and that they won’t accept “See ID” on the back. Personally, I don’t want to have to show my ID, because it’s a minor inconvenience. Another minor inconvenience is when the cashier asks to see the credit card after I’ve swiped it myself on the little terminal, and then put it away. If you’re going to ask for the credit card anyhow, what is the point of letting me swipe it myself? Also, why does the little terminal ask if I’m using a debit or credit card? It seems like it would be easy enough for the system to determine that. They could, for instance, set things up so that the first digit on credit cards is even, while the first digit on debit cards is odd.

I won’t show my ID for a CC purchase. If they ask, I refuse. If they have other valid reason (like for a types of medicine purchase or a rental car) of course I will show my ID. No one has refused to sell me anything yet.

I don’t show my ID. If someone were to ask, I’d say no. If they insist, I’ll walk and leave what I’m buying at the counter for them to put away. If I have a choice, I would not return.

I refuse to be treated like a criminal when I walk into a store.

Because it’s not asking “Are you using a credit or a debit card?” it’s asking “Shall we treat this as a credit or debit card?” I don’t have a credit card but I can run my debit card as either credit or debit. I usually do debit because all I have to do is sign and go. Running it as debit means I have to punch in my pin, and then it asks if I want cash back and then if I mean to put the whole amount on the card and it’s just a hassle.

Debit cards can often be used as credit cards, so they aren’t mutually exclusive types of cards. So no, it wouldn’t be easy to set that up.