[Politech] Walmart's MoneyGram requires gv't ID -- but not Western Union [priv]

From: Declan McCullagh (declan@private)
Date: Wed Oct 15 2003 - 20:43:23 PDT

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    Hi. If you find the following rant appropriate for Politechbot, feel free
    to post it [without my last name or email address].
    I went to make a routine, legitimate bill payment to a name-brand,
    nationally-known institution of about $900.00 at a local Wal-Mart
    today via the MoneyGram service, and found the clerk, and
    the customer service manager, and the store assistant manager
    insisting they weren't going to complete the transaction unless I
    first showed them my driver's license.
    I protested to the assistant store manager, "D. J." that the form
    already had my name, address, and phone number on it, and why did
    they really need my ID for a routine bill payment to a well-known
    institution? But apparently that wasn't good enough for either him
    or for Moneygram. I clearly told him that I thought my civil
    liberties were being violated by such an apparently unreasonable
    requirement. He mumbled something about "Patriot Act" and then
    told me, "I could care less."
    I then took my business 25 feet away to a Western Union agent
    within that same Wal-Mart store, and made my payment that way.
    The Western Union agent did not hassle me for ID, but then they
    charged more for the service than MoneyGram would have.
    I later found that page 11 of The MoneyGram Agent Guide
    details this "requirement".
    also seemed relevant.]
    But I still think this "requirement" is way above
    and beyond any federal anti-money-laundering mandate I know of.
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