Welcome Orlando Sentinel readers

by Walter Olson on May 19, 2009

I’m quoted in Sandra Pedicini’s report on the settlement (with $9 appetizer vouchers) of a lawsuit charging the Olive Garden restaurant chain with “printing the last six digits of customers’ credit-card numbers on receipts. The limit under the Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act is five.” Under FACTA, lawyers need not show that class members suffered actual damages from the violation; instead, they can claim statutorily prescribed damages, multiplied by the (usually large) number of customers involved. In most such cases, there are no reports of any identity theft because of the breaches: “It’s like reckless driving in which no one had an accident and except for the lawyers, no one even noticed the car speeding,” I’m quoted as saying. ["Olive Garden diners may be eligible for $9 voucher", May 19]

{ 4 comments }

1 Todd Rogers 05.19.09 at 3:51 pm

It seems like a trap. Surely fixing all of their credit card machines won’t be turn-key and happen over night. And there are going be those who will actually redeem their settlements. How many will use it as partial-payment on a larger bill and flip over a credit card to cover the difference? Ding! That’ll be another FACTA violation (in some instances).

2 AS 05.20.09 at 10:55 am

So we should get rid of the regulatory speeding laws, regardless of the potential harmful results. Riiiiiiiiiiiiight.

3 Walter Olson 05.20.09 at 11:17 am

I think reader A.S. may have an imperfect grasp of the appropriate comparison. A better one would be: “So we should let freelance lawyers set themselves up as traffic cops and pocket the ticket revenue. Riiiiiiight.” There are a range of options other than bounty-hunting and legalization.

4 gitarcarver 05.20.09 at 1:32 pm

Surely fixing all of their credit card machines won’t be turn-key and happen over night.

It should happen within a time frame less than that of “overnight.”

When registers / card machines are turned on, they connect to basically what is a server that checks for communication, then runs a diagnostic on the machine, and then upload any software upgrades into the credit card machine itself.

Olive Garden screwed up by not having their card machine supplier fix the issue. That being said, the lawsuit is still ridiculous.

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