When the big shift happened in the world of payments, from cash and checks to credit and debit cards, suddenly new possibilities became available: ordering online, making fast and easy transactions with a swipe, recovering funds if a card was lost or stolen (unlike cash, which would be gone forever if it disappeared), and, unfortunately, fraudulent payments.
For all of the positive sides of a card-based society, there are some opportunists out there looking for ways to abuse the systems to their advantage. But this isn’t an article about the downfalls about card transactions – in fact, we’re here to share ways you can protect your business from fraudsters, and come out on top.
Accept EMV chip cards
EMV is the global standard for credit and debit card purchases, and an important means of protecting your business from fraud. Work with a payment service provider that accepts these cards via a terminal that will read the chips, adding another layer of security. EMV not only helps keep your business transactions safe, it also protects your customers’ data.
Have a clear procedure in place
If you’re accepting payments in person, it’s wise to have clear procedures in place that your staff can follow when it’s time to accept a credit card payment. Some easy-to-follow steps help to ensure that your staff identify potentially fraudulent transactions before they’re completed. Here are a few easy steps to implement:
- Ask for identification, and match it to the name and signature on the card.
- Look for damage to the card, including the EMV chip and magnetic stripe.
- Use an address verification service (AVS) to match the billing address or postcode to the card. If the information given doesn’t match the card, you can decline the transaction.
- Use intuition – if a person is purchasing an unusual number of expensive items or has an unusual variety of things they’re purchasing, this doesn’t necessarily indicate fraud, but should increase alertness in the other steps of these procedures.
Securely accept online payments
In this day and age, this one is crucial. Online shopping has become the favored way to shop, with people from all over the world choosing to shop and place orders online from the comfort of their soft. Of course, this also means that fraudsters find plenty of opportunities online to try their tricks.
Online shopping can be particularly prone to fraud as the above procedure doesn’t apply – there isn’t a card to look at, a physical signature to match, and you can’t look the purchaser in the eye to determine whether they may be trying something improper.
This is why it’s paramount to have the right payment processor (PSP) on your side.
Your PSP should offer many layers of security protection, virtually allowing you to forget about the potential for these issues while they do all of the heavy lifting. Make sure that your PSP:
- Is certified to the highest level of data security – PCI-DSS Level 1 – which keeps your and your customer’s information safe, and out of the hands of unknown third parties.
- Has a professional fraud prevention/risk management team, who works around the clock to review and block fraudulent transactions. Fraudsters are regularly coming up with new ideas, so a PSP with a team devoted to staying ahead of these trends will ensure you’re always protected.
There are also a few warning signs you can look out for when it comes to online purchases, which may signal a fraudulent transaction:
- Orders contain many of the same item, and it’s unusual for this to be purchased in bulk.
- Multiple high-value items.
- Transactions which fail the AVS or CID review.
- Many purchases from the same IP address, or on the same day.
- Multiple orders to one address, on multiple cards.
- Multiple orders on one card, to many addresses.
- Many failed attempts on one card before the transaction is complete.
None of this should cause any undue concern about accepting payments online. When you know what to look for, protecting yourself is an easy job.
Let your PSP do the work for you
By training your staff on procedures and staying alert, you enlist help in keeping your business safe from fraudulent transactions. By choosing the right PSP, you can sleep soundly knowing that any transactions – in store or online – are protected from those who don’t have your best intentions in mind.
DPO has a 24/7 fraud and risk management team working around the clock to stay ahead of trends amongst scammers, and to monitor transactions for potentially harmful activity. With PCI-DSS security standards and dedicated security professionals, you can rest assured that all measures are taken to prevent activity from fraudsters.