Visa again blockades WikiLeaks’ credit card donations

By Stephen C. Webster
Friday, July 8, 2011 8:43 EDT
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U.S. credit card provider Visa said Thursday that a payment processor in Iceland briefly opened the floodgates to donations to secrets outlet WikiLeaks, so they took the necessary steps to close them again.

Icelandic payments processor DataCell had said the blockade was lifted yesterday after months of stalling from Visa and MasterCard, who cut off all funding for WikiLeaks in Dec. of last year.

The firm had contracted with another payments processor to enable WikiLeaks donations for a few brief hours, before Visa noticed and ordered it shut down.

DataCell previously threatened legal action against Visa and MasterCard over their blockade of WikiLeaks’ payments, which they said had hurt their business. They did not file the necessary paperwork, however.

WikiLeaks, on the other hand, did sue. DataCell was said to be joining that case.

“We choose to interpret [yesterday's lifting of the blockade] as that Visa and Mastercard (have) in fact given in to our demand that the payment services (be) reinstated,” the company said in a prepared statement.

Visa and MasterCard, along with PayPal, Bank of America and Western Union, have all decided to withhold funds from WikiLeaks. The site placed their resulting losses at nearly $15 million.

(H/T: Computer World)

Stephen C. Webster
Stephen C. Webster
Stephen C. Webster is the senior editor of Raw Story, and is based out of Austin, Texas. He previously worked as the associate editor of The Lone Star Iconoclast in Crawford, Texas, where he covered state politics and the peace movement’s resurgence at the start of the Iraq war. Webster has also contributed to publications such as True/Slant, Austin Monthly, The Dallas Business Journal, The Dallas Morning News, Fort Worth Weekly, The News Connection and others. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenCWebster.
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