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Protecting revenue is vital to your business. The increase in fraudulent payment activity is one of the most critical issues facing business owners today.

There are general methods to help you prevent fraud as well as more specific tips based on how and where you accept credit card payments.

In addition to our own tips, the individual payment brands may have best practices and guidelines that may benefit your business.

Tips to Avoid Face-to-Face Fraud

  • Protect your POS equipment – track your POS hardware and serial numbers; routinely inspect credit card terminals and PIN-entry devices to confirm serial numbers and ensure there are no signs of tampering
  • Safeguard your POS equipment and the surrounding area – use secure stands, tethers or security cables to prevent equipment "swaps;" check the retail environment for unauthorized hidden recording devices; install security cameras
  • Train your staff on POS equipment tampering prevention – help employees recognize the noticeable signs of equipment tampering; validate all POS equipment service and repair technicians
  • Work with your vendors to manage your POS equipment – it's important that you alert your third-party contacts of vulnerabilities related to remote access to the POS. You should require your vendor to take steps to secure and maintain your POS systems in accordance with the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS). In addition, the following security practices should be implemented to mitigate your risks of fraud from remote access to your POS:
    1. Disable remote access from the Internet, or turn it on only when necessary.
    2. Only use remote management applications that offer strong security controls.
    3. Use the most current version of a remote access product or service.
    4. Always change the system (or manufacturer) default passwords.
    5. Restrict remote access credentials only to third parties who need access.
    6. Enable data encryption and logging features.
    7. Implement a hardware-based firewall with advance security features.

Tips to Avoid Fraud in Online Transactions

Keep your transactions flowing smoothly and assist in protecting against card-not-present fraud with the help of the following products and services:

  • Address Verification Service (AVS) — Reduces the risk of accepting fraudulent transactions by verifying the cardholder's billing address, which is on file with the card issuer.
  • Card Security Verification — Compares the card security value, non-embossed 3- or 4-digit numeric code on the credit card, with the issuer's value on file. Credit card verification programs are offered by the major payment brands and known as CVV2 (Visa), CVC2 (MasterCard), CID (American Express) and CID (Discover Card).
  • Payment Brand Data Security — Support for your business to assist you in complying with Visa® and MasterCard® data security programs (CISP and SDP).

Prevent and Manage Chargebacks

The term "chargeback" describes the process that occurs once a customer refuses to accept responsibility for a charge on his credit card. Learn how to help prevent chargebacks, as they can result in lost revenue. Subscribe to the Online Chargeback Management System to receive notification of your chargebacks through our online reporting tools, and respond to them electronically.