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Discover to start tracking gun buyers

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Credit card provider Discover to will start tracking purchases at gun retailers in April, which will make it the first company to do so. Last September, the International Organization for Standardization, which determines payment cards’ merchant categories, approved a dedicated code for gun retailers in an attempt to help law enforcement solve gun-related crimes.

Related: NYC to use pension fund investments to push Mastercard and American Express to flag gun sales

Proponents of the initiative, mainly left-wing politicians and gun control activists, hope it will help in the investigation of gun violence crimes in the US.

Discover said that the new code will be included in its next policy update scheduled for April.

“We remain focused on continuing to protect and support lawful purchases on our network while protecting the privacy of cardholders,” Discover told Reuters.

Its competitors, Visa, American Express, and Mastercard are yet to comply with the new ISO code. ISO said the new code will be available by the end of this month.

“The decision to use the new merchant category code is eventually left up to the users in the industry,” an ISO spokesperson said.

In the US payment cards market, Discover has a 2% share, Mastercard has 26%, American Express 11%, and leader Visa has 61%.

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