All What to Know About Payment Processors


For busy merchants, taking credit or debit card payments from customers is probably something they do on a daily basis. However, it is likely that they don’t think much about it. Some do not even know exactly how a payment processor works, and what could be the problem with their payments solutions if an issue arises. Below is a look at what to know all about payment processors such as High Risk Solutions.

There are two terms that are often used interchangeably although they actually mean two deferent things: ‘acquirer’ and ‘payment processor.’ An acquirer is a financial institution whose role is to process credit or debit card transactions. On the other hand, a payment processor is an organization that communicates with the issuing financial institutions. It acts as a link between a merchant and the banks dealing with payment transactions. A payment processor authorizes transactions and makes sure that the merchant gets paid on time by enabling movement of funds from customers’ accounts to the merchant’s account.

The PCI DSS (Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard) was launched in 2004. It is a list of requirements meant to ensure that organizations processing, storing, and transmitting card information does so in a secure environment. All merchants that accept credit or debit card payments are supposed to abide by PCI DSS regulations. If a merchant fails comply, then they are vulnerable to data breaches and the subsequent negative consequences such as lost business, fees, and fines. Since PCI compliance can at times be complex, some payment processors offer their merchants assistance. Such compliance assistance includes breach coverage, hands-on help, check-lists, and
more. It is worth bearing in mind that PCI mandates are regularly updates. Thus, it is advisable for a merchant to seek the services of an experienced payment processor that offers an ideal PCI compliance assistance package.

Most people have probably heard of chip or EMV (Europay, MasterCard, and Visa) cards by now. EMV terminals have become a household name since the October 2015 when there was a shift in fraud chargeback liability. This shift brought about new responsibilities for merchants related to card fraud. What it means is that if a merchant processes a chip card on a terminal that is not EMV-enabled, they can be held responsible should any fraud occur. Prior to the liability shift, businesses could divert the blame to credit card firms if card-related fraud occurred. This is no longer the case. It is advisable for merchants to upgrade to an EMV-enabled terminal in order to assist in preventing card-related fraud. All in all, it is worth noting that the EMV does not offer any protection against a breach. Hence, a merchant should always inquire from their payment processor on the available solutions so as to prevent the theft of sensitive card data.

Card payments are not as simple as they may appear. Seeking the services of a reputable payment processor can go a long way in easing the process. The right processor will keep a merchant informed about card payments while addressing any queries or questions.