Gift cards are given to people as gifts or used as promotional material by a company to promote its brand by offering discounts to people who use the card. It’s loaded with money, which is the face value of what it says. It can be referred to as a prepaid card and is usually issued by one of the major credit card companies.
When these documents are issued by a credit card company, they usually have the company’s logo above them, and this serves as a mark of authenticity for the card. It also suggests that the card can be used anywhere that accepts that particular brand, as described by the logo. For example, if it is issued by Visa and has a Visa logo, it can be used anywhere Visa is accepted.
People who receive cards in lieu of a gift and don’t care about the brand that offered the instrument might choose to spend it elsewhere. For example getting a Sears card but you’re shopping at JC Penny so will use it there. Some people feel guilty that the presenter of the gift might be offended if the card is used elsewhere and most times they will ignore the card until it expires, wasting the amount of money loaded on it.
Are gift cards traceable? Short Answer: Yes, every prepaid monetary instrument is traceable as it has numbers and identifiers that allow you to use it in a transaction. However, this does not mean that the buyer can determine who is using it. If the gift was purchased with cash, the issuing business would have the information that the card number, say 54, was used to make purchases at that particular store, but would not know who used it.
Additionally, if the card was purchased with a credit card, the card company has information that the gift card purchased with Mr. Joe’s credit card was used to purchase items at a store.
In short, gift cards are traceable by the issuing company as to the fact that they were used; However, to determine exactly who used it would require a lot of tracing and research not worth it for an individual.
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