FACTA class action filed against Lowe's in Glen Carbon

Ann Knef Oct. 9, 2008, 6:23am


Lowe's home improvement store in Glen Carbon is facing a class action lawsuit on claims it violated the Fair and Accurate Transactions Act (FACTA) by printing more than the last five digits of customers' credit card numbers on receipts.

Represented by Brad Lakin of the Lakin Law Firm in Wood River, Doris J. Masters of Madison County claims the store, located at 159 Whistle Stop Dr., printed her entire 16-digit Lowe's account number on a receipt following an Oct. 15, 2007 transaction.

Masters claims the store was negligent by printing her account number on the receipt nearly one year after merchants were required by law to display no more than the last five digits of a credit card number.

FACTA was enacted in 2003 and mandated compliance for all credit card machines no later than Dec. 4, 2006.

"The purpose of this 'truncation requirement" is to prevent identity theft," states the complaint filed Oct. 2 in Madison County Circuit Court. "The Federal Trade Commission estimates that over 9 million persons each year have their identity assumed by criminals for financial gain, causing losses in excess of $50 billion."

The proposed class action claims there are at least 50 persons who were provided receipts which wrongfully displayed more than the last five digits of customer's account numbers.

"Defendant Lowe's Corporation, Inc. has willfully violated this law and failed to protect plaintiff (and others similarly situated) against identity theft and credit card and debit card fraud by failing to comply with the truncation requirement," the complaint states.

Attorneys Phillip A. Bock of Bock & Hatch in Chicago and Brian J. Wanca and Steven A. Smith of Anderson & Wanca of Rolling Meadows, are co-counsel to the Lakin firm.

The suit seeks statutory damages of $100 to $1,000 per violation, punitive damages, attorneys' fees, litigation expenses and costs.

"Most of Lowe's business peers and competitors readily brought their credit and debit card receipt printing processes into compliance with FACTA by programming their card machines and devices to comply with the truncation requirement," the complaint states. "Defendant could have readily done the same."

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