Georgia Legislators Mull Bill To Protect Privacy On Gun And Ammo Purchases

GON Staff | February 6, 2024

House Bill 1018 would protect the privacy of buyers of firearms and ammo and also protect retailers like Adventure Outdoors from discrimination by credit card companies.

Georgia legislators are considering a new state law to protect the privacy of Georgia gun owners and sportsmen from a new international standard that tracks credit card purchases of guns and ammo. House Bill 1018, the Georgia Firearms Industry Nondiscrimination Act, would protect the privacy of Georgians who use a credit card to buy firearms and ammunition and protect retailers from discrimination by credit card companies. HB 1018 prohibits a financial entity from using a firearms merchant category code to distinguish a firearms retailer from other retailers and prohibits persons or government entities from keeping registries of firearms or owners of firearms.

On Thursday, Feb. 8, the House Banks and Banking Committee of the Georgia State House of Representatives is holding a hearing on HB 1018. The committee meeting is scheduled for 2 p.m. in capitol room 406.

When passed, HB 1018 will “prohibit financial institutions from requiring the use of a firearms code that distinguishes firearms retailers from other retailers; to prohibit discrimination against firearms retailers by financial institutions through the use of a firearms code; to prohibit the disclosure of certain financial records by financial institutions; to provide for petitions to the Attorney General to investigate alleged violations; to prohibit persons or government entities from keeping registries of firearms or owners of firearms; to provide for construction; to provide definitions; to repeal conflicting laws; and for other purposes.”

The Sportsmen’s Alliance said, “Gun control extremists are using every possible avenue to disarm law-abiding sportsmen and gun owners, including how to uncover personal identifying information on who owns firearms in America. The latest tactic on this front is to track credit card purchases of firearms and ammunition.  Gun control fanatics like New York Attorney General Letitia James and California Attorney General Rob Bonta are looking forward to embracing this new ‘tool’ so they can focus their efforts on legal purchasers of firearms and ammunition in their ongoing quest to destroy our firearms freedom.”

In September of 2022, the International Organizations for Standardization (ISO) approved the creation of a new merchant category code (MCC) for firearm retailers to use when their customers use a credit card to purchase firearms and ammunition. Previously, credit card codes listed firearms or ammo sales as general merchandise or sporting goods. The new codes are specific to firearms and ammunition.

The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) is a nongovernmental organization that develops and publishes a wide range of proprietary, industrial and commercial standards and is comprised of representatives from various national standards organizations. The ISO was founded in 1947 and is headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland and works in 167 countries.

Pro-gun legislators in several states have already introduced and passed legislation on the topic and now it is Georgia’s turn.  The Sportsmen’s Alliance urges Georgians to use their Take Action button to email the members of the committee urging them to protect the Peach State’s sportsmen and support HB 1018.

The Sportsmen’s Alliance is a leading national organization that protects the interests of sportsmen. Originally known as the Wildlife Legislative Fund of America and Wildlife Conservation Fund of America, the organization formed in 1977 after Ohio Ballot Issue 2 threatened Ohio’s trapping community. After leading the fight to successfully defeat the bill, U.S. Sportsmen’s Alliance was officially incorporated in 1978 as the number one defender of sportsmen across the country. During the summer of 2015, USSA’s name changed to the Sportsmen’s Alliance in an effort to decrease name length and enhance brand recognition.

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