American Express SafeKey Video and B2B tips

American Express SafeKey® leverages the global industry standard, 3-D Secure®*, to detect and reduce online fraud by adding an extra layer of security when Card Members shop online. Merchant and customer experience answers in this article.

American Express SafeKey

 

How does Amex SafeKey impact the customer shopping experience? The cardholder may have some or no difference in the checkout experience, based on many factors, including prior online shopping history. The cardholder may be asked authentication question(s) to confirm it’s really the cardholder.

How does Amex SafeKey impact merchants?

  • Fraud liability for “It wasn’t me, I didn’t authorize it” goes away as liability shifts back to the issuer.
  • For business to business, where cardholder billing and shipping address frequently vary, cardholder authentication plays an important role not available with four digit CID security code validation only.
  • At this writing, American Express merchants do not receive a specific interchange discount as may be available with other card brands.

How can merchants adopt the Amex SafeKey service?

  1. Enroll your company on the American Express web site. https://network.americanexpress.com/globalnetwork/safekey/us/en/merchants-acquirers
  2. Receive e-mail from SafeKey Certification Team with your SafeKey ID and next steps.
  3. SafeKey Certification Team gets approval from Acquirer.
  4. Acquirer and SafeKey Certification Team complete required setup.
  5. Activate 3-D Secure on the application. (Ecommerce shopping cart, payment gateway, or ERP.) Both payment gateway and application must support the service.

* 3-D Secure is a registered trademark of Visa International Service Association in the United States and other countries.

Have a question about how to add to your business? Contact CenPOS global sales and integrations reseller, Christine Speedy, 954-942-0483 for more information.

American Express To Update U.S. Fraud Policies To Limit EMV Chargebacks for Merchants

Policy Changes Aim to Reduce Fraud Costs for Merchants While Promoting Further Adoption of EMV

NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)–In an effort to promote further adoption of EMV in the U.S., American Express (NYSE: AXP) today announced changes to its EMV chargeback policy to help merchants limit their fraud costs as they upgrade their point-of-sale systems. By the end of August 2016, merchants will not be held liable for chargebacks for counterfeit fraud when a transaction is under $25. In addition, by the end of 2016 American Express also plans to limit the number of counterfeit fraud chargebacks to a total of 10 per card account. The card issuer – not the merchant – will bear the financial liability for any additional counterfeit fraud transaction that is disputed on a card account after 10 chargebacks. This limit does not prevent a Card Member from disputing additional fraudulent transactions.

“We recognize the migration to EMV in the U.S. is an effort that will take time, which is why we are making these policy changes in order to provide flexibility to those merchants that may need more time to upgrade their point-of-sale terminals to accept EMV chip cards.”

“Combating fraud is an ongoing priority for American Express,” said Mike Matan, Vice President, Global Network Business, American Express. “We recognize the migration to EMV in the U.S. is an effort that will take time, which is why we are making these policy changes in order to provide flexibility to those merchants that may need more time to upgrade their point-of-sale terminals to accept EMV chip cards.”

The changes announced today by American Express will remain in effect until April 2018. The changes are expected to help reduce counterfeit fraud costs for merchants who have not yet upgraded their point-of-sale terminals to accept EMV chip cards. An analysis by American Express found that more than 40% of its counterfeit fraud chargebacks in the U.S. are for transactions under $25.

EMV technology reduces the risk of fraud stemming from counterfeit payment cards by storing information on a microprocessor chip embedded in a card. Card Members dip or insert their EMV chip cards into a merchant’s payment terminal instead of swiping their cards. Under a Fraud Liability Shift implemented by American Express in October 2015, the party – merchant or card issuer – with the least secure form of technology is responsible for counterfeit fraud costs.

American Express earlier this month announced the availability of Amex Quick Chip, which enables Card Members to dip their chip card during the check-out process and remove it before the transaction is completed. This can reduce the time Card Members must keep their Cards inserted in the terminal, providing an experience similar to swiping a magnetic stripe card and enabling merchants to streamline the checkout experience. American Express also offers merchant acquirers a self-certification program that allows them to perform the tests necessary to certify merchants’ point-of-sale devices for EMV chip card acceptance. The program enables merchant acquirers to complete the required POS certifications within as little as a few hours. Today, the vast majority of U.S. POS certifications on the American Express Global Network are performed using the self-certification program.

For more information about the self-certification program, merchant acquirers can visit: https://network.americanexpress.com/en/globalnetwork/certification/.

About American Express

American Express is a global services company, providing customers with access to products, insights and experiences that enrich lives and build business success. Learn more at americanexpress.com.

American Express Launches Quick Chip Service to Provide a More Seamless Process for EMV Chip Card Transactions at Point of Sale

Service is Available to Help U.S. Merchants Streamline the Check-Out Process When Card Members Pay With Their Chip Cards

NEW YORK,  June 15, 2016 — 

American Express today announced the availability of Amex Quick Chip, a technology that enables merchants to provide a more seamless experience at the point of sale for Card Members when they pay with their EMV chip cards. Amex Quick Chip is available to merchant processors, which may deploy the service to interested U.S. merchants through a software update to the merchants’ EMV-enabled payment terminals. This provides another option for merchants in industries where having a fast check-out process is especially important.

EMV technology reduces the risk of fraud stemming from counterfeit payment cards by storing information on a microprocessor chip embedded in a card. Card Members dip or insert their EMV cards into a merchant’s payment terminal instead of swiping their cards. With Amex Quick Chip, Card Members can dip their Card during the check-out process and remove it before the transaction is completed. This can reduce the time Card Members must keep their Cards inserted in the terminal, providing an experience similar to swiping a magnetic stripe card and enabling merchants to streamline the checkout experience. Importantly, Amex Quick Chip continues to offer the same protection against counterfeit cards that traditional chip card technology does.

“Reducing friction for Card Members and merchants is a key priority for American Express,” said Mike Matan, Vice President, Global Network Business, American Express. “Amex Quick Chip provides merchants operating in industries where fast checkout speed is critical with an option for ensuring Card Members can quickly and efficiently pay for purchases with their EMV chip cards.”

Amex Quick Chip is compatible with the technical standards used in Quick Chip services offered by other payment networks, enabling processors and their merchants to easily implement these solutions across all card brands that they accept.

Amex Quick Chip is currently available to processors, merchants and vendors in the U.S. Interested parties may download the Amex Quick Chip Technical Manual at www.amexglobalnetwork.com/amexquickchip to review implementation requirements for the service. Merchants that want to upgrade to Amex Quick Chip should contact their point-of-sale provider.

About American Express
American Express is a global services company, providing customers with access to products, insights and experiences that enrich lives and build business success. Learn more at americanexpress.com.

Merchants permitted to steer customers from American Express

The result of a federal antitrust case could change the way merchants treat acceptance of American Express. In short, merchants complained of substantially higher fees to accept American Express, but were not allowed to steer customers to lower cost card brands. A judgement was entered April 30, 2015 in favor of the plaintiff. An open ended stay of the permanent injunction pending appeal was denied.  However, the court allowed for a 30 day temporary stay of the permanent injunction on May 19, which just expired.

Excerpt from the American Express Anti-trust judgement

As reflected in § III.A of the Permanent Injunction, the court has determined that in order to implement an effective remedy in this case—in other words, “to allow Merchants to attempt to influence the General Purpose Cards that a Customer uses by providing choices and information in a competitive market”—merchants must be allowed to steer toward particular brands of debit cards, in addition to steering between brands of credit cards. (Permanent Injunction § III.A.)
The Permanent Injunction does not, however, expressly protect steering to other forms of payment, such as cash and check, although other sources of law provide such protection in certain circumstances…

Finally, the court expressly does not include brands of debit cards within the scope of
§ III.A.7 of the Permanent Injunction. Thus, while a merchant has the right under the Permanent Injunction to communicate to customers the cost of accepting American Express, or the relative costs of accepting different brands of credit cards (and the merchant may do so on an average, rather than transaction-specific, basis), American Express can prohibit merchants from including costs associated with acceptance of debit cards in this calculation, since blending the costs of accepting credit cards and debit cards would likely overstate the difference between the merchant’s overall cost of accepting American Express and its cost of accepting other brands, such as Visa and MasterCard, that have both credit and debit cards.

Keys for merchants who want to adopt steering

  • Merchants can offer discounts or rebates to customers
  • Merchants can display signs stating ‘preferred’ card brand
  • Merchants cannot blend debit and credit rates to communicate cost of acceptance differences
  • Other laws are applicable, including the Durbin Amendment to the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010. “Retailers can encourage their customers to use other forms of payment, such as cash and checks, and can discount for PIN debit, cash and checks.”

Merchant Card Brand Steering Challenges

Under the Durbin amendment, customer receipts must include a subtotal, discount amount, and final total. Merchants need a software or cloud based solution that can make the calculations and output the correct receipt.

If offering discounts for steering, removing decision making and calculations from cashiers is critical for both compliance and cash management.

CenPOS Steering Solutions

CenPOS is a merchant centric, cloud based payment engine with fully compliant steering technology, including the ability to identify which cards qualify for discounts, and automatically calculating the discount.

  • Analyze transaction data by user/department, day of week, and hour of day, to determine if and when steering is cost effective.
  • Offer steering discounts only when and where it’s financially beneficial instead of 24/7 in all locations.

 

REFERENCES

United States of America, State of Arizona,    State of Connecticut,    State of Idaho,    State of Illinois,    State of Iowa,    State of Maryland,    State of Michigan,    State of Missouri, State of Montana,    State of Nebraska,    State of New Hampshire,    State of Ohio, State of Rhode Island,    State of Tennessee,    State of Texas,    State of Utah, and    State of Vermont
v.
American Express Company, American Express Travel Related Services Company, Inc., MasterCard International Inc., and Visa Inc.
http://www.justice.gov/atr/cases/americanexpress.html

* http://www.justice.gov/atr/cases/f313600/313609.pdf

http://www.marketwatch.com/story/amex-to-stop-merchant-curbs-2015-06-18-231034750

http://www.forbes.com/sites/maggiemcgrath/2015/02/19/antitrust-lawsuit-loss-puts-amex-among-the-dows-worst-performers/

Chip-enabled point of sale system American Express Reward

american express reward emvI just received email saying I qualified for the Chip-enabled point of sale system terminal rebate program. With the April 30 deadline approaching, American Express is being proactive. I don’t actually qualify because I don’t have a retail store. If I tried to collect later, it would be denied because they verify the type of merchant account you have, and mine is ecommerce.

emv smart card

EMV chip smart card.

VX520 emv NFC verifone terminalCheck out our Chip-enabled point of sale terminal buyers guide.