Online Gun Purchases
Sent to Senators Max Cleland and Paul Coverdell on July 10, 2000.




July 10, 2000

The Honorable Max Cleland
200 Russell Senate Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20510

Dear Sen. Cleland:

This week I received an advertisement in email to visit the site www.ebang.com, an online gun show auction site. I urge you to draft, sponsor or support legislation that would regulate online purchases of handguns from both independent sellers and commercial dealers, to require the same background checks as walk-in dealers, to close the leak of weapons flowing into the hands of minors and criminals.

This site is an example of a disturbing attempt to circumvent current regulations that require specific age and background checks on gun purchasers in the United States. As you know current criteria used by most websites to validate a user's age is nothing more than a credit card, which can be borrowed or stolen and presented as age verification before the missing credit card has been reported.

Most sites do not regularly check the validity of the credit card after the initial site registration process, and therefore cannot detect users who have presented credit cards that later are reported missing or stolen.

Additionally, students are issued debit cards from their banks which simulate credit cards in every manner specific to the verification of age process at most sites, thereby allowing teenagers to enter the sites specifically intended for adults only.

Please take whatever steps you can to support legislation that will close these gaping leaks that continue to allow guns to reach minors and criminals.

Sincerely,

Chris Coggins
[address omitted]
Macon Georgia 31204