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The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) approved creation of a merchant category code this past Friday that will track suspicious weapons purchases.

VISA Inc, the world’s largest payments processor, followed the announcement with one of its own, 24 hours later, saying the company will implement the new merchant category code for US gun retailers to identify transactions at firearms stores.


The move comes in response to pressure from New York City officials and gun control activists who called on credit card companies to support establishment of such a code.

NYC Officials urge Credit Card Companies to Trace Gun Buys

Fifty New York State legislators headed by State Senator Zellnor Myrie and Assembly Members Chantel Jackson sent a letter last month to MasterCard and American Express, calling for creation of the code.

“It’s just commonsense that we have the same policies in place for gun and ammunition stores,” New York City Mayor Eric Adams, a former NYPD officer, said in an August 2022 news conference on the issue.

Proposals were brought before the ISO to create a merchant category code for gun retailers, but up to this point, American Express, MasterCard, and VISA had not supported the proposal.

Unique merchant category codes already exist for grocery stores, sporting goods stores, bicycle shops, and many other retailers.

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Hana Levi Julian is a Middle East news analyst with a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. A past columnist with The Jewish Press and senior editor at Arutz 7, Ms. Julian has written for, and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.