Posts Tagged ‘Credit card processing rules’

Credit Card Processing – The right to know

Monday, March 14th, 2011

One could have expected, that in March 2011, when US most embarrassing secrets are all in the open, getting access to Visa and MasterCard rules would be an easy task. Surprisingly as it may sound, this is not the case.

Visa and MasterCard both, disable the general public, as well as merchants, ISOs and IPSPs access to the rules which are only shared with Members. This lack of transparency generates an incoherent processing market, in which, each acquirer, comes up with its own set of processing “rules”, all based, believe it or not, on same rules set by the associations…

From a simple MCC definition, up to complex aggregation models, each acquirer will present its own interpretation and enable a different processing flow.

While most acquirers will enable FX merchants to report under MCC 6211, others will demand same activity to be reported under the notorious MCC 7995.

Same would apply to different aggregation models – some acquirers would religiously argue that aggregation or IPSP models are not supported by the associations, while others would happily enable different models to run through them.

Regional processing is also interpreted differently by different acquirers. Some would request a real entity, within their region, to enable a merchant to process through them. Others would accept a shell entity, or a subsidiary which is not directly related to the processing flow, up to acquirers that believe that merchants coming from different geographies can process through them.

It’s about time the associations publicize the rules, and eliminate the need to use “experts” that have “first hand access” to “the rules” as well as “experience” with different processing “Schemes”.

Until such occurs, the associations’ policy to maintain opacity with regards to credit card processing rules effectively generates a ‘black market’ environment, where neither rules nor logic applies. Inventive solutions can always be reached with the right acquirer.

Gidi Argov, Founder and CEO