Periodically, Visa and/or MasterCard update chargeback rules in an effort to make fighting chargebacks easier (sometimes for the merchant and sometimes for the customer). In April, Visa will be releasing several changes to the current rules which will save merchants time and allow them to fight the growing friendly fraud epidemic.
Next week there will be three separate Congressional hearings on OCP in which members of Congress will have the opportunity to ask questions of the Department of Justice, the FTC and other regulators about their enforcement actions against banks and payments companies. Stopping OCP is a major priority for ETA and Platinum Payment Systems. Fortunately the ETA has been working hard on Capitol Hill to express the industry concerns about OCP and has created a petition asking Congress to stop Operation Choke Point. Please sign the petition, the deadline is Wednesday, July 16th.
Last month the Senate passed the Marketplace Fairness Act which would grant sates the authority to force e-commerce businesses to collect and remit sales taxes to remote states. The bill is currently in the House Judiciary Committee awaiting a hearing and further review.
As a credit card processing company that focuses on card not present and e-commerce merchants we have been watching this piece of legislation closely as it’s passage could have a dramatic effect on our clients.
Too many chargebacks can put a merchant out of compliance. Both Visa and MasterCard have chargeback ratios they use to determine whether or not a merchant is in compliance.
Ever tried to process a higher ticket transaction for a client and have it repeatedly come back as declined only to have the client tell you that they are positive they have a sufficient limit and funds on the card for the transaction, and are even somewhat offended by the fact you are telling them it was declined? Many merchants have experienced this frustration and are wondering what the right answer is.
The truth is the customer usually does have a sufficient limit and funds on the card for the transaction. However, because the transaction is outside of the customers “traditional” or “normal” spending habits or they are using a card they haven’t used for some time the issuing bank that gave the customer the credit card will automatically decline the transaction as a precaution against fraud. Customers will have to contact their credit card company and request that they authorize the transaction. They can then go back to the merchant and purchase the good’s or service’s with no problem.
A good message to have on your check out page or to read to your customers would be the following:
“If this purchase exceeds your regular purchasing pattern or you have not used the card you are about to use in a long period of time, please contact your credit card company or your issuing bank and inform them of this purchase. In doing so, you will avoid the possibility of your credit card company and/or issuing bank declining the card due to irregular purchasing activity or possible fraudulent activity.”