Fraud is defined as “deceit, trickery or breach of confidence perpetrated for profit or to gain some unfair or dishonest advantage.”
Fraud has always been a threat to merchants everywhere, but the advent of the Internet Age and e-commerce has made it more pervasive than ever. Online fraud protection is now integral to the operation of a successful web business.
Online Fraud Protection
Online transaction fraud statistics are sobering. In its 2009 Internet Crime Report, the Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) noted that complaint submissions — including online credit card fraud complaints — jumped more than 22 percent over the previous year. For the 146,663 cases IC3 referred to local, state and federal law enforcement agencies, the total dollar loss was $559.7 million — more than twice the total reported losses of $264.6 million in 2008.
Those statistics reinforce the necessity for all online merchants to be vigilant about fraud detection and fraud protection — regardless of their size or volume of business — to safeguard both their finances and their reputation.
Since the currency of the Internet is credit cards, credit card fraud protection must be the focus of your efforts against transaction fraud — and Transaction Express® by TransFirst® is a great place to start.
Credit Card Protection
Credit card fraud protection starts with basic fraud protection tools like Address Verification System (AVS) and Credit Card ID, also referred to as CVV2 or CVC. Both are available from Transaction Express, a Web-based payment gateway.
AVS is used to verify the identity of the person attempting the transaction by checking the billing address provided by the user with the address on file at the credit card issuer. CVV2 is a 3- or 4-digit number printed on the back of MasterCard, Visa and Discover credit or debit cards (on the front of American Express cards) that merchants ask for in card-not-present (CNP) transactions on the Internet, by mail or fax, or over the phone.
While effective, CVV2/CVC and AVS should be a starting point in your defense against online credit card fraud.
Transaction Express steps online credit card protection up a notch with a more sophisticated arsenal tools. It also gives merchants a choice of their preferred method for submitting and processing payments.
Transaction Express’s secure processing platform is fully PCI compliant and offers a Tokenization service, which allows merchants the option of not collecting or storing sensitive payment data on their own operating systems. Transaction Express’s secure hosted payment page eliminates the need to store card data altogether by sending back minimal information such as transaction and reference IDs and authorization codes. For merchants with their own websites, Transaction Express can provide a link to a secure online payment page that’s branded with the merchant’s logo or custom banner and can support one-time and auto-recurring donations.
Merchant PCI Compliance
In addition to fraud protection services from Transaction Express, you’ll also want to reduce your risk of fraudulent transactions by becoming PCI compliant. PCI compliance means fulfilling the requirements of the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards (PCI DSS), which provides technical and operational conditions for processing, storing and transmitting credit card data so that the cardholder’s information remains secure and private.
Data breach protection defends against unencrypted personal identifying information falling into the hands of unscrupulous thieves and fraudsters. Breach protection ranges from simple steps like installing firewalls and using anti-virus software to more advanced measures like monitoring transactions and validating all information before shipping.
All of these tools, combined with security best practices, are a merchant’s premier protection against online transaction fraud. Remember: If you haven’t been victimized by online credit card fraud yet, it may be only a matter of time.