Commentary on Operation Chokepoint by Kurt Strawhecker, Managing Partner TSG
The owner of a small online art boutique was surprised when she was denied a merchant account, not once – but twice, by two major national merchant acquirers.  Later, she learned the actual reason for not being allowed to accept credit cards for her beautiful and unique woven and needlepoint items and patterns – it was due to the unfortunate fact that her name is “Gun” and part of the name of the boutique business includes her name.
This is just one example of the effect of Operation Chokepoint (OCP) which has been using the blunt force of branding entire merchant categories that are legal businesses as “high risk” by government regulators.
OCP has been well documented throughout the industry, and has been receiving additional national mainstream press attention of late.  In addition, several developments in recent weeks indicate that some of the concerns about the initiative are being heard in Washington.
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