The Great Credit Card 'See ID' Hoax: Comments
(most recent posts first)
Also, in response to Nougat's comments, I'd hardly call Walmart a local merchant. If you really want to do your local merchants a favor, shop in locally-owned stores, and pay cash. I wouldn't spend too much time worrying about who profits when you make a purchase at Walmart using plastic, whether it's debit or credit. I'm sure your credit card company and Walmart will look after themselves just fine.
Monday, December 08, 2003 at 12:49:20
I think this discussion would be an appropriate place to put a link to this prank: http://www.zug.com/pranks/credit/
Also, I'd like to respond to Nougat's comment: "if you're using a check card with the Visa or Mastercard logo on it -- use it as a *debit* card and punch in your PIN. Help prevent your local merchants from having to spend more than they need to." The bank will get their money either way. You might want to start checking the fees you are being charged on your bank statement. Most banks charge *you* a fee every time you punch in your pin and use your debit card to make a purchase. I know at my bank, every time I use my debit card I get charged 25 cents as a "regional pin purchase fee". Personally, I would rather cut in to profits of my local merchants than increase the price of everything buy by using my debit card. But hey, that's just me...
Sunday, November 23, 2003 at 07:32:11
I'm not sure if this is relevant, but I work as a cashier at a grocery store. When people pay credit, they slide their card throught the machine, I press credit on mine, and it's paid for. The receipt and slip will print out, they sign the slip and I keep it. I see sometimes the people will just scribble something that is in no way a signature, I don't even look at the signature. We do not look at the card so it doesn't matter what the person writes on the back. Some customers give their card to me to verify but I just give it back because I don't need it.
Friday, October 24, 2003 at 14:05:22
This website explains Visa/Mastercard and American Express policies on requesting any sort of ID with use of a credit card. http://www.in.gov/dfi/consumer/pdfs/id.pdf
Tuesday, September 30, 2003 at 05:14:33
I HAVE USED THIS ON THE BACK OF ALL OF MY CREDIT CARDS FOR YEARS AND NEVER HAVE I HAD A PROBLEM. OF COURSE I HAVE NEVER USED IT AT THE POST OFFICE WHICH IS OF COURSE IN ANOTHER GALAXY AS FAR AS COMMON SENSE AND REASONABLENESS GOES. I HAVE HAD TO SHOW MY PICTURE ID FREQUENTLY TO OBVSERVANT CASHIERS. I AM ALWAYS HAPPY TO DO SO. I WAS AMUSED AT ONE CASHIER WITH OBVIOUS COGNITIVE LIMITATIONS, SHE SAID TO ME, "THANK YOU MR. EYE DEE." TO THE BEST OF MY KNOWLEDGE ABOUT THE MATTER OF LEGITIMACY OF SIGNING OR NOT SIGNING, I THOUGHT THE ACTIVATION PROCESS ACTUALY ENCUMBERS ME TO ABIDE BY THE RULES PERTAINING TO THE CARD. AFTER ALL, WHO KNOWS WHO SIGNED THE CARD, IT ISN'T WITNESSED OR ATTESTED TO. COULDN'T I JUST TELL THE COMPANY THAT I NEVER SIGNED THE CARD AND ALL OF THOSE CHARGES ARE NOT MINE. YEAH THEY WOULD BE ALL OVER ME LIKE LINT ON A CHEAP SUIT.
Tuesday, August 26, 2003 at 14:46:09
I've never heard of writing 'see id'; I do know that I used on card for over a year after the signature had become obliterated by use; I also recall a trial of supposedly 'secure' photo-card credit cards in the UK--a journalist put a picture of a chimp on one and even though the card was a new scheme (and you'd think, therefore, people would be extra careful and nervous of fraud) only 2 shops from 10 objected. I believe one of these then went on to accept the payment...
Monday, August 11, 2003 at 05:57:12
Well, I have "check ID" on the back of my CC and have had for years and haven't had a problem yet! I just looked and NO where on the card does it state it MUST be sighed to be valid. Underneath the signiture area is simply reads "Authorized Signature". On the bottom of the card it reads in part, "Use or signing of this cards signifies agreement to current conditions..." blah, blah, blah. Notice the word "OR"! So if the Post Office wants my business they better, I hope they have a copy of the agreement I have with my bank that issued the MasterCard to show me where the card MUST be signed!
Wednesday, August 06, 2003 at 12:17:09
what is this loyalty for local merchants... they are ripping you off anyway, and you're paying for their goods, you have a choice by what you pay with. Using debit could count towards your ATM transaction limit for some banks. It is wise to choose Credit even though your card is a debit card...
Thursday, July 31, 2003 at 20:24:21
I just wanted to add that I do work in retail and for years and years we always just checked the ID's that said SEE ID or were not signed, while still matching the signature when people would sign the slip (if it didn't match well or the names were not correct, we did check ID). We also always warned people about the danger of not signing the card at all, b/c if someone else does sign it then of course the signature matches and no one questions it as being stolen. About a year ago we were given a 'reminder' (which was new info to me) that cards not signed were not valid according to the credit card companies. This did not sit well with alot of the employees since most of us have SEE ID on our credit cards. We were however told that we are allowed to use our best judgement! If it says SEE ID, check it, tell them the credit card company does want them to sign it, but still run the sale through. We also suggest signing small and writing SEE ID with the signature. Mine is even highlighted to make sure it is noticed, and most places do double check....it really just depends on the store, their policy, and the person ringing the sale.
Thursday, July 31, 2003 at 08:47:28
Okay, I just ran into the same problem at the post office. More than anything it irritates me that if they're refusing the card as a visa because it's not signed ("for my protection") then the card should not be valid, period, and should not be accepted as an ATM either (which I was allowed to do). I suppose if you really wanted to push it you could write "see ID" in cursive so that when they tell you it's not valid you say "yes it is" and sign your CC receipt "see id". They're not allowed to judge handwriting so they'd have to accept it as verification right? :-)
Going by what my card says, I accept the terms by "using" the card, not by signing it.
One question: I too came back to my computer and tried to google for something official about this but I keep getting referred to your website. Where did you find it on the visa and mastercard websites?
I, too, went off on a rampage in the Post Office when my card was not accepted because of "SEE ID" on the back. But, the Post Office could not give me an answer other than it was for my own protection and that credit cards are invalid without a signature. I contacted my credit card issuer, and they offered an even less satisfactory response. But, I think Jesse may be correct in the explanation that the signature is a acceptance of the terms of the credit card. But, one question remains unanswered. If I can go to the USPS site and buy stamps online (for an extra fee, of course), why can't I use this same credit card in their office?
I HAD THE SAME FRUSTRATING EXPERIENCE AT THE POST OFFICE HOWEVER I WAS USING MY CARD AS A DEBIT CARD WITH SEE ID ON BACK AND VISA LOGO ON FRONT. IF I KNOW MY PIN CODE WHY SHOULD I HAVE TO SIGN MY CARD, WHERE IS THE LOGIC IN THAT? I DO UNDERSTAND HOWEVER THE TERMS AND AGREEMENT ISSUE-- WHICH MAKES PERFECT SENSE.
It is about time people start realizing this. I am the manager at a customer service desk in a mall and for people to be able to purchase gift certificates we do require a signature and do not accept cards with see-id or a card that is not signed. I even go so far as to show customers printouts from visa, mc, amex and disc websites that state that the card is not valid unless signed and that see id is not a valid substitute. It is nice to see people who have the capacity to reason and that are not bull-headed people who just say "ITS MY CARD I DONT HAVE TO SIGN IT FOR YOU OR FOR ANYONE ELSE!!" I wish more people would realized that for their own protection they should sign their cards.
Ya, I actually have been using simply "SEE ID" for years even at the post office. However, it was at the post office where they refused to use it for the first time.
Legally, the card is void without being signed and the reason is this: The card acts as a legal document and when signed shows that you agree to the TERMS of the card. It is not used only for signature verification, but rather for showing that you accepted the terms of the card issuer.
If the merchant (in the case, the PO) took it to court because of fraud, Visa/MC would support the card issuer instead of the PO since the card was not signed. Put both on there, making SEE ID more prominent, and you'll be good.
But it does seem that the Post Office is one of the only establishments who obey this rule.
I've also got a "SEE ID" on the back of my card. *FREQUENTLY*, I'll buy stuff, have the cashier turn the card over, look at the "signature", compare it to what I've signed, and then hand my card back. Happens to me *all* the time.
Oh, and check this, I sign my slips with obviously fake names (Mickey Mouse and Bob Villa are my two favorites) and I have *never* had someone question my signature.
grr. So much for theft protection.
Oh! And I *ROUTINELY* use my wife's credit card. She has a "SEE ID" notice on the back (actually, hers reads "NOT VALID WITHOUT PHOTO ID"). She has a very obviously female name. I have *NEVER* been questioned about using her card.
Just thought I'd share in venting.
I've been looking, and I haven't been able to find any reasoning behind requiring credit cards to be signed. When you make a credit card purchase, you sign the sales slip. Unless you're paying at the pump for gas, then you don't sign anything, but there's no one there to look at the back of your card anyway. In that case, possession is ten tenths of the law.
So what's the point with the signatures anyway?
On a side note, an NPR story last week related WalMart's recent suit against Visa and Mastercard. Debit card transactions cost the merchant about nine cents per 100 dollars sold. Credit card transactions cost the merchant about $1.50 per $100 sold. So if you're using a check card with the Visa or Mastercard logo on it -- use it as a *debit* card and punch in your PIN. Help prevent your local merchants from having to spend more than they need to.