This past week, retailers began a campaign to encourage attorneys general from around the country to sign on to a letter urging Congress to require financial institutions to adopt PIN technology for cards issued to their consumers. The letter ignored the fact that a majority of the latest data breaches would not have been prevented by PIN technology and tried to convey a message that mandating the use of PINs could eliminate fraud and singlehandedly secure the electronic payments system. Such a narrative is dangerous. Focusing on just one technology bestows a false sense of security at a cost that everyone bears. It also conflates credit card fraud and data breaches. It’s important that the attorneys generals understand that PINs would not have prevented any of the recent data breaches at so-called “big box” retailers.

LSCU has been in contact with both Attorney General Luther Strange in Alabama and Attorney General Pam Bondi in Florida. The League followed up with a letter of opposition to the retailers position, as well as relaying some truths in regards to card technology. The League is confident that its message has been received and will provide updates in the future.