Basic Prevention Tips

Preventing Credit Card Fraud Before, During & After the Sale!

As a merchant, you want to make sure you are taking the necessary steps to prevent credit card fraud BEFORE, DURING & AFTER the sale. We hope the following information helps you minimize your exposure to fraud!!


Knowing the credit card processing industry is the very best way to prevent fraud BEFORE you ever process a transaction. The industry as a whole has garnered a shady reputation for over promising and under delivering in many areas related to a merchant account!

Most businesses need to accept credit cards in today's economy. Take care that you choose a company that you can depend on for honest information and ongoing service so you do not become a victim of credit card fraud BEFORE the sale!


Once you begin processing, you now have the ability to prevent credit card fraud during the sale. Keep in mind that there is both external and internal fraud! You need to be aware and do your best to prevent both!

Internal Fraud: Keeping credit card data safe so employees do not misuse the information is very important. Make certain that your system does not show the full card information. You will also want to be aware of any Returns processed through your system. Processing a return to a credit card is one of the easiest ways to commit internal credit card fraud. It is a best practice to consider not allowing 'unmatched' returns or returns that do not coincide with a previous sale.

External Fraud: This type of fraud happens when customers identify your weak spots. Consider these tips when processing in a:



  • Check For Matching Signature
  • Do Not Accept Unsigned Cards
  • Cardholder Info MUST Match Signer
  • Familiarize Staff W/Card Features
  • Watch Purchasing Habits
  • Look For Distracting/Rushed Behavior



  • Obtain Imprint When Possible
  • Use AVS/CVV2 Fraud Features
  • Require Faxed Copy of Signature/Copy of Credit Card on Large Purchases
  • Use EXTREME Caution on International Orders
  • Use VERIFIED BY VISA Program (Prevents the 'It Wasn't Me L' Excuse)
  • Use Delivery Confirmation
  • Call Processor for Card Issuing Bank Verification Before Delivering

Being aware of what happens DURING the sale can really save you lots of time and money.


Many business owners think of credit cards as 'money in the bank' and most of the time they are right. But a large part of credit card fraud happens AFTER the sale. Not taking the proper steps during the transaction can lead to accepting fraudulent cards but even when you and your staff do everything right, you are still at risk for losses.

A consumer has the right to dispute any charge on their statement up to 6 months past any implied warranties. (This is the main reason businesses have to be approved to accept credit cards). When a dispute occurs, it is called a 'Chargeback' - here are some tips for:



  • Set proper customer expectations (under promise-over deliver)
  • Have all of your refund/return policies in writing
  • Take care of customer issues or complaints promptly
  • Keep credit card receipts (organized) for 18 months
  • Respond promptly to Retrieval Requests
  • Use processor for Retrieval Requests & Chargeback Submission

Even in cases of fraud, the merchant is ultimately responsible for the validity of each and every transaction.

Preventing credit card fraud BEFORE, DURING & AFTER the sale is definitely possible! Be diligent, be aware and you will save yourself from being victimized! Please Contact Our Team if you need any staff training on Fraud Prevention or Proper Card Acceptance!