Mastercard and Visa to block use of cards on Pornhub after child abuse allegations

Credit card giants Mastercard and Visa on Thursday said that they will block their customers from using their cards to make purchases on Pornhub after a prominent newspaper columnist alleged that the platform included videos of child abuse and rape.

According to a report by The Guardian, Mastercard said it is terminating use of its cards on Pornhub after its own investigation confirmed violations of standards prohibiting unlawful conduct on the site. Mastercard said it was also investigating other websites for potentially illegal content.

Meanwhile, Visa said it was suspending the use of its cards on Pornhub on Thursday even though its own investigation was incomplete.

Pornhub, in a statement, called the actions “exceptionally disappointing”. “This news is crushing for the hundreds of thousands of models who rely on our platform for their livelihoods,” Pornhub said.

Pornhub is under scanner after The New York Times reported the pornographic website showed videos of child abuse and rape. On December 4, Nicholas Kristof, the opinion columnist at The New York Times, wrote that Pornhub carries rape scenes, revenge pornography, and other examples of explicit video taken without consent of the participants. Pornhub has denied the allegations.

In response to Kristof's story, Visa and Mastercard said they're investigating the matter. “When we identify illegal activity, our policy is to ask the acquirer to terminate the relationship, unless an effective compliance plan is put in place,” Mastercard told The New York Times. Visa on Sunday had said that it was “actively engaging with the relevant financial institutions to investigate, in addition to engaging directly with the site's parent company, MindGeek."

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Free Press Journal