Three Ways Merchants Can Avoid Credit Card Fraud

As a merchant, you must accept credit/debit cards as payment if you want to stay in business. Plastic as payment is here to stay until somebody puts a chip in our forehead. However, we must be diligent about safety. No merchant wants their company name headlined as the target of fraud and identity theft.


  1. Avoid Credit Card Fraud by Choosing Your Merchant Account Provider Carefully: is an industry leader and the most trusted name in card processing. We use 128 bit SSL encryption on line which is military grade. Our software and technology equipment is compliant with standards set by the Payment Card Industry (PCI) for security. When you use our payment portal your customers credit information is protected and so are your funds.

  1. Do Not Delay Installing the Best Technology Has to Offer: 

Right now, the EMV chip card terminals are the safest technology we have. The US is lagging other countries in the use of these terminals because of the cost to banks and card processors for the switchover.

European countries that have been using the chip readers for years have seen a dramatic drop in Point of Sale fraud. Currently, terminals read chip cards and magnetic strips. Since the information on magnetic strips is easily reproduced, they will gradually be phased out.

If the customer has a chip card but your terminal only accepts a magnetic strip and their information is stolen at your terminal, you will be liable for their losses.

  1. Guard Your Terminal Against Credit Card Fraud:

 Any terminal where a credit card with a magnetic strip is swiped unobserved is subject to information theft from both customers and employees. They may insert a card reader first and retrieve days of transactions with information they can sell to those who make and use fake credit cards.

Video cameras are helpful after the fact and should be used as a deterrent. Make sure your employees know transactions are being recorded. They should witness the card swiping and not use that moment to bag or wait for the receipt.

Unattended terminals should be in well-lit areas so fraudulent activity can be clearly recorded. The cost of a roaming attendant at gas stations, car washes and cash machines may be worth the cost. Your customer base may grow with an attendant because customers feel safer personally and technologically.

Just to keep it all in perspective, according to the FTC only about 3% of the US population is affected by identity theft each year. Of that 3%, only 25% is credit card fraud, not total identity theft. As merchants, you should protect your customers from fraud as well as possible. However, the brunt of the responsibility for prevention of personal credit card fraud falls to the consumer.

Make your merchant account provider and avoid credit card fraud.


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