Can I block prepaid cards from ecommerce transactions?

Yes, you can block prepaid debit cards from ecommerce, MOTO, and other transactions. Specific technology is required to identify what type of card is being presented. It is not something that can be detected by credit card terminals. The transaction needs to be identified at the gateway before your system actually makes the authorization.

That technology is not currently offered by most gateways, including the popular big name gateways.

Here are some reasons why you would want to block prepaid debit cards:

  • If you offer recurring billing and you ship the merchandise with a small initial payment, you may not be able to collect later or get your product back.
  • If you accept political donations, there is no way to identify the donor.
  • Webmasters can reduce headaches of collecting payment on recurring web host billing.

I offer this prepaid debit card blocking gateway service to customers processing more than 50,000 transactions or $5,000,000 per year.

10 thoughts on “Can I block prepaid cards from ecommerce transactions?

  1. how can the transaction be identified at the gateway before the system makes the authorization? What system/technology can be used to identify prepaid cards?

  2. In a secure host based environment, the card data is compared to a database of information before it goes for an auth. Any number of factors can be checked so that you can reject cards before the authorization, including prepaid cards. My team has developed proprietary technology for this. In addition to the technology, you also need an accurate, continually updated database to compare to. It’s extremely rare for companies to have this.

    For those who’ve asked, the database and technology are not for sale. It is protected by copyrights and patents. The technology services are offered for a per transaction fee.

  3. Can you provide contact information for more information on your prepaid debit card blocking gateway service. We may be interested in using it.


  4. Hi, I am interested in the technology that will help me identify pre paid cards that are used on our site. I do not want to block at this time, but put a report listing each transaction with a pre paid card. Are you able to help with that? Thank you.

  5. That’s an excellent question David. No. For every action there are many considerations. Essentially that would require identifying the card, creating a record for the card and transaction, and then passing a record back to the merchant for the transaction. We do not store any transaction data with that kind of identifier and this is not a service of interest at this time, even if assuming it were legal.

  6. Thank you. Follow up question. In our quest to find a way to identify these types of card transactions, are you able to share any information that would help identify when these types of cards are being used? Would our only option be to ‘block’ the charge? My first concern is that if we cannot identify them without blocking them…how will I know for sure that only pre pay cards transactions are being blocked? Thank you for your help.


  7. David – Let’s say your customer pays with a card that’s over the limit. The transaction is declined. How do you know if only cards that were over the limit declined? (Leaving aside all the other reasons a card could decline.)

  8. You mention that the technology is “protected by copyrights and patents”. Please specify the patent number that is protecting this technology.

  9. @Justin – blocking prepaid cards is not specifically protected. As you can probably tell by business interest, creating a solution that works and is continually updated for accuracy is very difficult.

    I offer customers a payment platform as a service (PaaS) with many tools to solve everyday business problems. Niether elements of the technology, nor the entire platform, are available for ouright sale. When customers use it, they sign a license to use agreement as is standard with commerical software.

    Note: Merchants must abide by Card Acceptance Guidelines and local laws – blocking cards may be prohibited.

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