VISA TO LIMIT DISPLAY OF ACCOUNT NUMBERS

Visa announced plans to limit the display of credit‑card account numbers on receipts to combat identity theft. Beginning July 1, Visa will require that new credit‑card machines display only the last four digits. All machines that accept Visa cards must comply with the change by mid‑2006.

Some merchants already block out digits in a credit card number on customer receipts. Thirteen states, including Ohio, have enacted laws in recent years that prohibit printing entire credit card numbers and expiration dates on credit card receipts. The state laws generally permit the last five digits to be printed on the receipt and apply only to electronically printed receipts. The state laws generally contain phased in effective dates as compliance requires changes be made to credit card processing terminals.

Two bills requiring that no more than the last five digits of a credit card account number be printed on receipts have been introduced in the United States Senate this year.

Mike Tomkies and Elizabeth Anstaett