Why Your Business Needs a Backup Merchant Account

COVID has changed so much about the payments industry and the day-to-day concerns of merchants.

COVID has changed so much about the payments industry and the day-to-day concerns of merchants. Many brands have spent the last year scrambling to keep up and trying to figure out what to do next. One thing is for sure, the business and payment landscape has changed for good.

Jed Morley, an expert on payment processing and founder and CEO of merchant processing company Platinum Payment Systems, recently shared his thoughts on the future with Net News Ledger (NNL). His advice to entrepreneurs and business owners is to go beyond setting up a strong relationship with your payment processor – have backup processes in place.

Why? Morley explains that having a backup process in place ensures you can protect your fundamental operational systems. In this COVID, unknown world we live in today, anything can happen. More than one merchant has done absolutely nothing wrong, but was suddenly notified that their merchant account was going to be shut down.

Morley says complacency is the real enemy. Make sure you do some research and have a backup in place. Know who you can turn to when you suddenly find yourself in a bind. Covid isn’t the only threat out there today. Fraud has become rampant. Hackers are around every corner trying to steal data, your identity and your reputation. In short, it is critical that every merchant is prepared.

“If you’re just starting, don’t wait until you have an issue…Especially if you’re online, or if you’re working in a high-risk industry,” says Morley.

How to Protect Your Business from Fraud

Unfortunately, as a merchant, you’ll never completely eliminate fraud. Criminals are becoming savvier by the day, but that doesn’t mean you can’t take certain steps to protect your business. The best defense is to use a combination of fraud prevention strategies.

Educate your team

Start by training your employees to spot credit card fraud. Make sure they also utilize proper fraud prevention techniques like checking the card’s security features for damage, asking for ID, verifying signatures, refusing to manually enter card details, not accepting letters of authorization allowing someone else to use a person’s credit card, etc.

Upgrade terminals 

If you haven’t already, now is the time to upgrade your terminals for EMV compliance. Make sure that your machines are fitted for use with EMV chip card technology to considerably reduce fraud. EMV technology has been so effective that, according to Visa, it has been known to reduce counterfeit fraud losses by 75%.

Build Strong Relationships

When in doubt, make sure you reach out to your merchant services provider. Building a strong relationship with their team – like the team at Pinwheel Pay – will help you during times when you need to discreetly request a real-time authorization and any other questions you have.

The bottom line: the best way to protect your store during these uncertain times is to train your staff, know the signs of in-store credit card fraud and have proper systems in place for online transactions. Above all, stay vigilant.

Content crafter Alex Wilmont has been active in the payments industry for over 15 years. He lives simply, gives generously and loves his 2 dogs. His mission is to enhance and innovate the fintech industry for years to come.