Mastercard and Visa have announced they will stop processing payments to Wikileaks, following similar moves by Amazon.com, PayPal and other businesses who are cutting ties to the organization.
Mastercard Worldwide “is taking action to ensure that WikiLeaks can no longer accept MasterCard-branded products,” a spokesman told CNET late yesterday.
“MasterCard rules prohibit customers from directly or indirectly engaging in or facilitating any action that is illegal,” the spokesman said.
Today, Visa Europe announced it is also beginning the process to stop payments to Wikileaks. Visa didn’t go as far to say Wikileaks is engaging in illegal activity; instead, Visa said the suspension is pending an investigation. A spokeswoman told BBC that the investigation will examine Wikileaks’ business and whether it violates Visa rules.
Wikileaks is supported by donations, which have taken blow after blow as PayPal, the Swiss Post Office bank and now the two credit cards companies have cut off Wikileaks. The organization’s founder, Julian Assange, was also soliciting donations for his legal defense stemming from sexual assault allegations in Sweden. He surrendered to British police today and was denied bail.