Interchange fee” is a term used in the payment card industry to describe a fee that a merchant’s bank (the “acquiring bank”) pays a customer’s bank (the “issuing bank”) when merchants accept cards using card networks, such as Visa and MasterCard, for purchases. Although Visa and MasterCard determine Interchange rates, the fees are not retained […]
What is PCI DSS?
Many merchants ask me this question and want to know how it will affect their business. The Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) is a set of requirements developed by the major credit card companies to enhance credit card data security. These requirements only apply to e-commerce merchants or merchants that are using […]
Card Association Response to Updated FTC Regulations
In January, MasterCard made an effort to enforce new regulations and best practice guidelines pertaining to online direct marketing – specifically “negative option” marketing, which they consider to be a “brand damaging” practice. The FTC Negative Option staff report, featuring five key marketing principles, triggered both Visa and MasterCard to make changes to their operating […]
More Crackdown on Post-Transaction Marketing
Some recent news and government actions affecting online retailers enrolling consumers in membership clubs warrants a follow up to our blog a few months ago about post transaction marketing. In late January, NY Attorney General Cuomo made some strong moves in the battle against post-transaction marketing. His office reached an agreement with Fandango, in which the […]
Interchange Fee Legislation – Who Will Pay the Price?
This spring, U.S. Representatives Peter Welch (D-VT) and Bill Shuster (R-PA), introduced HR 2382, the Credit Card Interchange Fees Act of 2009. Welch, the bill’s author, states that “credit card fees are killing small businesses.” The act, targeted to help small retailers, would limit the fees charged to merchants. It would also prohibit charging higher […]
What Card Payment Usage is Telling Us
According to MasterCard’s presentation at the Goldman Sachs US Financial Services Conference on Dec 8, retail sales are showing positive signs – relative to card payment usage. They cited November as the third consecutive month of growth since July, 2008. They attributed the growth to changes in consumer attitudes. Consumers are focusing more on quality […]
Card Association Battles Around the Globe
It seems as though anytime a company gets large enough, there will always be people who feel it is unfair and begin to wage war on what they don’t know. I have talked about Visa and MasterCard having to pay large settlements to Discover after a long anti-trust battle. Although Visa lost that battle, the war on […]
American Express Acquires Revolution Money
As a follow-on to my blog about alternative payments, it looks like one big player is either afraid of the competition – or maybe it is simply making smart business decisions. Announced yesterday was American Express’ deal to purchase Revolution Money, launched by AOL Co-founder Steve Case’s Revolution LLC in 2007. The acquisition, estimated at […]
Are VISA and MasterCard Going Too Far?
In recent news, Discover Financial Services has been going round and round in a lawsuit with Visa Inc. and MasterCard Inc. Discover claims restrictions were placed by Visa and MasterCard – the world’s two largest card companies – on banks to stifle competition and violate antitrust laws. Visa and MasterCard argue that Discover simply has […]
How Rising Interchange Rates Can Affect Your Business
Interchange Rates There are many third-party processors out there that benefit when the Bank Card Associations, Visa and MasterCard, raise their rates. They look at this as an opportunity to make an additional profit from their merchants. Merchant services providers get to decide how they will pass the various increases and decreases through to the […]