ExxonMobil, Sunoco, Chevron Card Briefs

Shell warning marketers of demonstrations at stations

Carole Donoghue, Petroleum Editor

OAK BROOK, Ill. -- Exxon Mobil Corp. is cutting its Visa and debit-card processing fees, effective March 1. The company cited the Durbin Amendment, enacted October 1 last year, which gave the Federal Reserve the authority to regulate PIN and signature debit-card fees charged by big banks.

Here's how Exxon's new fees come out:

Card Type: Current Fee vs. New Fee

PIN Debit: 1.30% plus 10 cents vs. 1.26% plus 10 cents.

Visa Electronic: 1.81% plus 10 cents vs. 1.77% plus 10 cents.

Visa Speedpass: 1.71% plus 10 cents vs. 1.67% plus 10 cents.

Cards issued by smaller banks--those with assets of fewer than $10 billion--are exempt from the Federal Reserve's regulated rates, Houston-based ExxonMobil has told its marketers.

Additionally, some costs of debit card acceptance, such as network and switch fees, are not subject to regulation and so were not reduced by the Fed.


Sunoco plans to send emergency messages to marketers to warn them when credit card crooks are believed to be in their vicinity. The "breaking alerts" will be flashed to retailers via Sunoco's marketer website when locations are considered at "high risk" to skimming attacks--Florida and Georgia are current skimming hotspots.

The supplier also says it wants retailers to install disposable security seals across card reader access doors. If a seal is broken or tampered with, the words "VOID OPEN" automatically appear on the seal surface to warn station personnel that someone has accessed the dispenser.

Skimming devices always capture the full magnetic stripe data of a card anytime the card is used, noted Philadelphia-based Sunoco. "Liability is based on the number of cards compromised, so early detection can greatly reduce the liability of a retail location," it said.


San Ramon, Calif.-based Chevron has told marketers that its credit-card issuer, GE Capital Retail Bank, has hired a company to visit their stations through March 9 to check that all card applications displayed in holders are current.

A representative from the inspection firm, the Mosaic Co., will also deliver training and quick reference guides for the Chevron- and Texaco-branded credit cards. The Mosaic rep will also talk to station cashiers to try to gauge how much they know about the cards.


Shell is warning marketers that they may have to deal with demonstrators at their stations as a result of a decision by the federal government to approve the company's spill response plan for the Chukchi Sea.

The move clears one of the last remaining hurdles to Shell's plan to drill in the Alaska offshore area this summer, which has been by environmentalists and Alaska Natives.

Shell has told marketers that they could see some demonstrations at their sites as a result. The company said that it has instructed its own employees to "behave in a safe, fair and firm manner and not to engage or disrupt any demonstrations."

Officials said they would urge marketers to do the same, unless there are safety or security issues that arise, in which case, they should call local law enforcement authorities as needed.

Shell marketers should also refer any media calls to the company, rather than speak to reporters themselves, Houston-based Shell said.