Insurance Installment Payments: Visa Credit Card Processing Rules Change 2017

Insurance companies must comply with new VISA installment credit card processing rules changes effective October 2017 to maximize business profits and mitigate chargeback risk. Everyone in the payment ecosystem has or will need to make changes to comply, including acquirer, issuer, payment gateway, merchant, and sometimes integrated billing software.

payment gateway SaaS recurringVISA DEADLINE:

  • October 14, 2017 Visa stored credentials compliance mandate.

INSTALLMENT CREDIT CARD PROCESSING BEST PRACTICES:

  • Obtain cardholders’ consent to store the credentials. Opt-in check box stored with payment gateway record is recommended.
  • Have a solution to retrieve consent records on request.
  • Disclose to cardholders how stored credentials will be used.
  • Notify cardholders when any changes are made to the terms of use.
  • When capturing card data for the first time, use a PCI compliant payment gateway to create a random token replacing sensitive data; eliminate paper credit card authorization forms or digital signature forms where payment data is collected on the form, not via a payment gateway.
  • Inform the issuer via a transaction that payment credentials are now stored. For example, perform an Account Number Verification Transaction via a Zero Dollar Authorization with 3-D Secure Verifed by Visa.This is managed by the payment gateway, and requires specific transaction indicator.  TIP: If the solution you’re using performs a $1 authorization, often with a void or reversal after, that’s because the payment gateway, and or the implementation, are out of date and don’t support current requirements. Ask how yours works- assume nothing!
  • Identify subsequent transactions with appropriate indicators when using stored credentials. Payment gateway to identify all future transactions after storing:

With an indicator that shows that the Transaction is using a Stored Credential for either Installment, Recurring or Unscheduled Credential On File.
With the Transaction Identifier of the Initial Transaction.

  • Follow all cardholder disclosure and consent requirements specified in the Visa Rules. Opt-in check box with digital record managed by the payment gateway is recommended to comply with issuer records requests.
  • If performing a preauthorization for any transactions, additional new requirements must be met, including for reversals and reauthorizations.

INSURANCE INSTALLMENT BEST PRACTICES

Increasingly complicated rules vary by card brand, business type and many other factors. This article may oversimplify such complexities. Merchants are advised to:

  • Use tools, including intelligent cloud-based payment gateways, to help comply automatically.
  • Segregate payment acceptance from applications; example, embedded payment object or i-frame.
  • Review Visa Stored Credential Transaction Framework bulletins
  • Review Visa Core Rules and Visa Product and Service Rules
  • Review workflow for the customer payment experience and confirm payment technology workflow is compliant with new rules. There is no automated update; merchants must actively participate in process to ensure compliance.

COMPLIANCE RISKS AND REWARDS:

  • Compliance will increase approvals, customer satisfaction, and profits.
  • Reduce time spent on collections, increase automation, reduce attrition.
  • Cardholder authentication can qualify some transactions for lower interchange rates plus mitigate losses related to “it wasn’t me”, more commonly seen in higher risk insured policy holders.
  • Compliance required to participate in Visa Account Updater service.
  • Non-compliant transactions are essentially invalid authorizations, and issuers will be within their rights to chargeback via Reason Code 72. This is different than a consumer generated chargeback. Issuers are getting slammed with missed payment cardholders and need to get their money back some way; JP Morgan wrote off about $1B in Q1 2017 according to one source. The Wall Street Journal has published several articles over the last year about the surge in subprime credit cardholders missing payments. Overall, we’re looking at a national rate over 4% per quarter- over 16% annually, representing over a trillion dollars. Issuers may want to offset losses from subprime cardholders by collecting monies from merchants for the same.
  • Chargeback Risk includes the initial transaction and all subsequent transactions that are not in compliance for the allowable chargeback period. For example, if non-compliant the issuer could chargeback installments on October 14, November 14, and December 14.

Reference: Visa Stored Credential Transaction Mandates and also Visa Core RulesTable 5-21: Requirements for Prepayments and Transactions Using Stored Credentials.

Before selecting a payment gateway for installments payments, ask these questions:

  • How will it help with new Visa Stored Credential Mandates compliance?
  • Does it support 3-D Secure cardholder authentication, for customer initiated payments?
  • What type of digital record is created at the time of customer opt-in to terms, how is it retrieved, and how long is it retained?
  • Does it support Zero Dollar Authorization?
  • Does the receipt dynamically change based on type of transaction, i.e. cash, credit card single payment, installment payment etc.
  • Does it support level 3 processing for commercial cards (if applicable to business type)?
  • If I change banks or payment processors, how will it affect my customers? My business?

TIP: Most payment gateways will not be compliant on October 14. An easy starting point to reduce the list of vendor choices is to ask the payment gateway what type of digital record is created at the time of creating an installment agreement, and how will it be accessed? Need help to get compliant? Contact Christine Speedy to learn more about solutions for your business that are quick and easy to adopt, increasing efficiency and growing profits virtually overnight.

Christine Speedy, CenPOS authorized reseller, 954-942-0483 is based out of South Florida and NY. CenPOS is a merchant-centric, end-to-end payments engine that drives enterprise-class solutions for businesses, saving them time and money, while improving their customer engagement. CenPOS secure, cloud-based solution optimizes acceptance for all payment types across multiple channels without disrupting the merchant’s banking relationships.

SaaS Startups: Credit Card Customer Onboarding 2017

Critical rules changes for credit card processing, especially recurring billing, will impact business profits and chargeback risk effective October 2017. Simply copying what other big SaaS businesses are doing successfully is not good enough. Everyone needs to make opt-in updates to comply, and EMV chip card acceptance is a good example of how even big companies can takes months or years to change.

payment gateway SaaS recurring

Critical SaaS recurring billing credit card processing rules past, present and future:

    • To validate a card and create a token for future purchases, perform a Zero Dollar Authorization. There’s a procedure, including using recurring indicator, and a transaction fee for this. If the solution you’re looking at suggests a $1 authorization, that’s because the payment gateway, and or the implementation, are out of date and don’t support current requirements. Run!
    • The sales receipt must include phrase “recurring transaction”, frequency of the charges, and the period of time agreed to.
    • Cardholder opt-in record. Rules may vary by each card brand; following Visa requirements is a good practice. For example, read Visa Stored Credential Transaction Mandates and also Visa Core Rules. One of the new requirements is specifying how the Cardholder will be notified of any changes to the agreement. The significance of new mandates is huge, and non-compliance will result in higher fees, penalties, reduced sale approvals and chargebacks.

Payment gateway selection directly impacts profits, risk, and your customer buying experience. Lots of developers integrate one or two of the oldest payment gateways because they’re “reliable” and familiar. True, but, this could cost your company it’s path to profitability and even existence. Any WordPress developer knows technology and implementation of technology changes. It’s constant. Before selecting a payment gateway for a SaaS startup, ask these questions:

  • How will it help with new Visa Stored Credential Mandates?
  • Does it support 3-D Secure cardholder authentication?
  • How will it help with account updating for expiration and replacement cards?
  • What type of digital record is created at the time of customer opt-in to agreement, how is it retrieved, and how long is it retained?
  • Does it support authorization reversals?
  • Does it level 3 processing for commercial cards (if applicable to business type)?
  • If I change banks or payment processors, how will it affect my customers? My business?

TIP: Most payment gateways are reliable; level 3 processing, and 3-D Secure support are starting points to reduce the list of options. Need help to get compliant? Contact Christine Speedy to learn more about solutions for your business that are quick and easy to adopt, increasing efficiency and growing profits virtually overnight.

Credit Card Expiration Updater & Recurring Billing

Are automated recurring billing transactions declining due to expired credit cards? This article identifies methods to automate credit card expiration updating for installment, fixed recurring, and variable recurring token billing transactions.

All credit cards on file are managed at the payment gateway level for PCI Compliance. The ‘token’ is the alpha numeric character set that replaces sensitive card data. Businesses have access to the token, but not the sensitive cardholder data, after it’s stored. With token management, users can update the credit card expiration date manually. No other fields can be modified. If the CVV – CID security code or card number changes, a new token is created for the new card.

Per rules of card acceptance, the actual expiration date must be used. There have been recurring billing software solutions on the market that simply change the expiration date for recurring transactions with expired cards, for example by changing the date by one year. This enabled transactions to go through with an authorization in some cases because the expiration date was not validated by the issuer. However, for chargeback rights, the expiration date must be provided by the Cardholder and must be correct.

Credit Card Expiration Date Updater Methods

  1. Self credit card updating. An email is generated by the recurring billing platform and or payment gateway alerting the cardholder of an upcoming expiration. The cardholder then self-updates their payment method via a web portal. While effective at reducing phone calls for updating, it still requires action by the busy cardholder, thus, many still go unattended until the point that a transaction fails. This impacts profits with attempted transaction fees, the time to manually reach out to customers, and cancellations; We all know that sometimes a customer pays for a service they do not use effectively, but don’t bother to cancel. Once they have to update their card… the revenue stream can be lost.
  2. Automated credit card updating via the card brands. Merchants must register for the service with their merchant services provider, and must have a payment gateway that supports the updater service. Visa and MasterCard charge a one time fee for registration. There’s also a fee per card updated, which varies by merchant services provider; typically, the provider will mark up for profit.

Credit Card Expiration Date Updater Costs

One-time Visa Account Updater (VAU) Setup fee $250, MasterCard Automatic Billing Updater Setup fee $350 per merchant account. The fee per update varies. For example, we charge $.09 as of this writing and clients have been quoted $.30 by other companies.

Recurring Billing Compliance Alert

Significant changes are coming to recurring billing. After the first authorization, all subsequent recurring billing transactions are to include a unique reference to the initial authorization. This must be managed seamlessly in the background at the payment gateway level. Adding a new field to the transaction process is significant and the challenges are likely on par with the launch of US EMV. Expect problems in the next 12-24 months as gateways struggle to comply with these requirements.

Refer to Visa Public Rules, and search for “recurring”, including section 5.9.9 Prepayments, Repeated Payments, and Deferred Payments, for more details.

CenPOS and Credit Card Expiration Date Updater

CenPOS, an enterprise payment gateway and merchant centric processing platform, supports the account updater services. As your CenPOS representative, I can activate the service on CenPOS for you, however, if your merchant services resides with a third party, you’ll still need to register through them. Before proceeding, contact Christine Speedy at 954-942-0483 for more information.

How to use a stored token for credit card payment: CenPOS training video

Variable payment recurring billing is easy and fast using CenPOS token billing solutions. Video shows how to retrieve a stored token to charge a credit card again. Tokens replace sensitive card data with random alpha numeric characters. Merchants can then charge the card again, with customer permission, by retrieving the token.

A Christine Speedy, CenPOS global sales, training video. This video uses ZOOM so you can watch as is, or enlarge as it was recorded in larger 1280 width. If you have trouble viewing, watch it on youtube: #33 How to use a stored token for credit card payment: CenPOS training video .

Tokens replace sensitive payment information with the last 4 digits of the card only, and the random alpha numeric token ID that replaced the full card number. CVV can never be stored, per card association rules, but merchants can perform a zero dollar authorization before creating a token.

Click on the credit and debit tab.

Select USE TOKEN. If the ‘use token’ icon is not visible, contact the merchant administrator to update user permissions, either by moving the user to a new role that has the use token permission, or by updating the existing role to add the permission to all users in the role.

If you don’t know the token ID, search for it.

token billing screenshot

Select the token by clicking on it.

Then enter the sale details. If the merchant has set up additional information fields, enter now. If the credit card type qualifies for special interchange rates that require additional information, such as a purchasing card, CenPOS will automatically prompt for it.

A receipt is automatically delivered to the customer email address put on file when the card was originally stored and the token was created. As a reminder, full credit card data is never accessible to anyone after a token is created.

The same process applies for stored checking account information via the Checks tab. By regulation, merchants cannot initiate repeat sales creating an ACH on business checks. Customers must initiate business ACH transactions. CenPOS supports that via the Electronic bill presentment and payment, or EBPP electonic invoicing solution.

About the author: Christine specializes in providing merchants with innovative technology to create efficiencies and ease the burden of PCI compliance. With a primary focus on “card not present” payment processing solutions for mid-size companies, including manufacturers and wholesale distributors, merchants improve PCI Compliance and streamline the payment experience for both their company and their customers. It’s fast, easy to use, and requires no capital investment to implement. For sales call Christine Speedy at 954-942-0483 or click here for more information.