California court finds for Apple in credit card privacy suit

“Apple Inc and other online retailers did not break California law by requiring consumers to provide their address and phone numbers as a condition of accepting credit card payments, the state’s high court ruled on Monday,” Dan Levine reports for Reuters.

“In a split decision, the California Supreme Court said state privacy protections for credit cards do not apply to online purchases that are downloaded electronically,” Levine reports. “The ruling comes after the same court in 2011 said that those privacy protections do apply to brick and mortar retailers, finding that they could not request a customer’s ZIP code during a credit card transaction.”

Levine reports, “Apple was the defendant in the latest lawsuit, brought as a proposed class action by a consumer who purchased downloads from iTunes. Online retailers eBay Inc and Wal-Mart Stores Inc also filed briefs supporting Apple.”

Read more in the full article here.


  1. I agree with this ruling.

    When you are B&M sales, you see the person in front of you. You can be reasonably assured fraud isn’t taking place. Also you can check ID against the name on the credit card, you just can write it down.

    When you are in online sales, the situation changes. You have to be sure that the person is who they say they are, and the shipping address helps with this. Also the CC authorization depends on this.

    1. One correction- none of the payment processors I’ve looked at require the full address for verification, just the ZIP code. Along with the credit card number, expiration date, and the CCV code from the back of the card. A full address, including street number and name, and city name, are not *required* to process a card.

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