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Comment: Re:Calls from Credit Cards on "Suspicious Activity (Score 1) 74

by MobyDisk (#48022273) Attached to: Medical Records Worth More To Hackers Than Credit Cards

Did you actually read that story?

Yes, so let me explain:

Bottom line (and there are exceptions), merchants aren't on the hook if it's a face-to-face transaction.

Nope! Read on to see why:

Usually, however, it is the banks that get hurt the most.

And how do they get hurt? In that quote, the word "banks" links to a BusinessWeek article that explains:

issuing banks are shifting the expense of fraudulent face-to-face transactions to retailers. One reason: complaints that the buyer's signature didn't match the one on the card. These "charge-backs" drive up retailers' costs, which are ultimately passed along to the consumer, says Mallory Duncan, the NRF's general counsel.

So the law says the credit card holder isn't liable. The CC company says they aren't liable, the bank is. But since the retailer is responsible for verifying the signature, they were at fault. Notice that it specifically says that in face-to-face transactions the retailer is responsible.

I'm unclear why the BusinessWeek article says "shifting" since this was the way things were back in 1996 when I worked retail. This isn't new.

I have 2 stories on this: One: in the brief time I worker retail I worked at a store that actually checked this. Your photo ID + name on card + signature had to match. We even turned away corporate customers making big purchases because sometimes the boss would give an employee their Amex business card, but we wouldn't let them make the purchase. I know the store manager got chewed-out by some business people for enforcing it and they always stood their ground.

The other example was when I was at a retailer and I got asked for me photo ID. I thanked the manager in person for having the employee check, but was told that the employee would now get in trouble because they aren't allowed to ask!

Comment: Re:Unscientific. (Score 1, Interesting) 299

by _xeno_ (#48009683) Attached to: Consumer Reports: New iPhones Not As Bendy As Believed

They have a video. That's exactly what they do: they place the phone on two blocks of wood, and then have a machine apply a set amount of pounds of force to a bar placed across the middle of the phone.

About all their test tells you is that you shouldn't take Consumer Reports tests seriously if this is the kind of testing they're going to do. Especially because the people bending the phones weren't bending them straight in the middle, they were bending them right below the volume buttons. Which is also where their test phone's case actually breaks, even though the bend is down where they placed the bar.

Comment: Re:Woo hoo!! (Score 1) 181

by MobyDisk (#48005047) Attached to: Breakthrough In LED Construction Increases Efficiency By 57 Percent

The newer ones are "full wave rectified" so they flicker at 100hz/120hz instead of 50/60, so you don't notice it. Here is an article on how to eliminate the flicker by adding a capacitor but that is a pretty big, expensive, and ?potentially unreliable? capacitor. It looks big in the picture, so I checked online and found one for $5 that was over an inch tall. Also, I don't think electrolytic capacitors would do so well outdoors. (I'm no EE, so I may be wrong.)

Comment: Re:Statistics (Score 1) 590

by MobyDisk (#48004299) Attached to: The Great Lightbulb Conspiracy

Nope: it's statistics. It is impossible to actually really guarantee a minimum. They can only guarantee that a certain percentage of their stock will meet that minimum. Think about it this way: You buy a bulb. The only way to guarantee that this particular bulb will run X hours is to actually run it X hours. But if they sell it to you after that, it now has to run 2X hours to meet the guarantee! So all they can do is run 1000 bulbs, and if 99% of them make it X hours they slap the guarantee on the next lot of bulbs that come off the plant.

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