The Southern District of Florida has held that the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FACTA), applies to both electronic receipts from online purchases and receipts printed in stores. In Grabein v., Inc., 07-22235-CIV, 2008 WL 343179 (S.D. Fla. Jan. 29, 2008), Plaintiff filed a class action lawsuit after he used a credit card to purchase flowers through Defendant’s website and received a receipt that contained both Plaintiff’s truncated credit card number and the card’s expiration date. Plaintiff alleged that printing both pieces of information violated FACTA, which provides:

No person that accepts credit cards or debit cards for the transaction of business shall print more than the last five digits of the card number or the expiration date upon any receipt provided to the cardholder at the point of the sale or transaction. 15 U.S.C. § 1681c(g).

Defendant moved to dismiss the case on three theories: (1) the word “print” means to actually put ink to paper, rather than to display on a computer screen; (2) that “point of sale” refers only to receipts “printed” in stores, rather than at home at the option of the consumer; and (3) that 15 U.S.C. § 1681c(g) is unconstitutionally vague. 

The court rejected all three arguments. First, after considering a battle of dictionaries, the court held that “print” can mean both the display of data on a computer monitor and the physical marking of paper or another surface. This conclusion was consistent with the only other FACTA case on point, Vasquez-Torres v. Stubhub Inc., No. 07-1328, 2007 U.S. Dist LEXIS 63719, *7 (C.D. Cal. July 2, 2007).

Second, consistent with Ehrheart v. Bose Corp., No. 07-350, 2008 WL 64491 (W.D. Pa. Jan. 4, 2008), the Grabein court held that the legislative intent of FACTA was to prevent identity theft broadly, and that such intent encompassed receipts “printed” both at home and in stores.

Finally, the court held that 15 U.S.C. § 1681c(g) is sufficiently clear so as to allow ‘persons of common intelligence” to understand its prohibitions, and that the statute therefore is not unconstitutionally vague.