Fraud FAQs

Before reading these questions and answers, review the Chargeback Management and Fraud Transaction Alert Services documentation.

General Questions

What does BlueSnap do to prevent fraudulent orders?

BlueSnap has partnered with Kount to analyze customer data and purchase behavior on every transaction to identify and stop fraudulent orders. BlueSnap offers three levels of enhanced fraud prevention services, each with different capabilities and customization opportunities. Refer to Fraud prevention service levels. BlueSnap also provides account validation for ACH transactions (see the question below).

Does BlueSnap verify bank account details for ACH transactions?

Yes. BlueSnap has partnered with GIACT to verify bank account details for ACH transactions. The bank account and routing numbers are validated before the transaction is sent for processing. Unauthorized and malicious users will be prevented from sending fake bank account data.

How does BlueSnap handle chargebacks?

BlueSnap has partnered with Chargebacks911 to help with the dispute process. We also support Visa Merchant Purchase Inquiry (VMPI). For more information, refer to Fraud Transaction Alert Services.

Fraud Alert Services

What is the difference between Fraud Alert Services and Chargebacks911?

  • Fraud transaction alert services provide notice of a transaction that the card issuer intends to process as a chargeback due to suspected fraud and/or a cardholder-initiated dispute.
  • Chargebacks911 provides chargeback assistance and does not provide fraud alerts.

Are all chargebacks eliminated?

No. Under certain circumstances, there may still be a chargeback even if the transaction is refunded. The success rate depends on many factors, but generally there is about a 90% success rate that these alerts can prevent a chargeback. Refunding these alerts does not guarantee that a chargeback will not be issued.

Will I be charged a fee for these services?

If you are on a plan to manage excessive chargebacks, BlueSnap enrolls you in these services and the associated fees are passed on to you. However, BlueSnap only charges the fee that we incur, and we help you avoid penalties from other sources. If you have questions about the fees associated with these services, contact your Account Manager or BlueSnap Support.

My company does not use a subscription or recurring model. Am I affected by Fraud Transaction Alert Services?

Yes. Even if you don't have a subscription or recurring billing model, these alerts are still applicable and can still be helpful in reducing chargebacks and fraud.

How do I ensure that I'm getting optimum fraud results?

While the following fields are optional for order processing, they are necessary for fraud determination. Always include these fields to get optimal fraud results: shopper email, shipping address, billing address, CVV, and device data. For more information, refer to Fraud prevention service levels.

Ethoca and Verifi

What if I already use Ethoca or Verifi? Can I use it with BlueSnap too?

BlueSnap can work your alerts if you wish. BlueSnap refunds all alerts that are received for you. If you use Ethoca or Verifi outside of BlueSnap, you are responsible for refunding the alerts. Working through BlueSnap allows merchants with the opportunity to have BlueSnap work on the alerts on behalf of the merchant.

How do Ethoca and Verifi prevent chargebacks before they are filed?

Alerts are notifications for specific transactions (confirmed fraud and customer disputes) that will result in a chargeback unless a merchant takes action. The merchant needs to issue a refund as soon as possible or stop settlement (objective is within 24 hours), and provide a notification to the issuer that such actions have been taken.

What kinds of chargebacks are prevented through getting Ethoca and Verifi alerts?

Both confirmed fraud and customer dispute reason codes.

How often are Ethoca alerts successful in preventing the chargeback before it occurs?

The success rate depends on many factors, but generally there is about a 90% success rate that these alerts can prevent a chargeback. Refunding these alerts does not guarantee that a chargeback will not be issued.

Step-by-Step, how does the service work?

The cardholder calls their Issuing bank and files a dispute. The Issuer receives dispute and sends an alert notification to Ethoca or Verifi (if the Issuing bank is on the Ethoca or Verifi network and if the merchant is enrolled in Ethoca or Verifi). Ethoca or Verifi sends the alert notice to the merchant/BlueSnap for refund through the Ethoca or Verifi portal. The merchant/BlueSnap issues a refund to the transaction and marks the outcome as "Refunded"; this can be done in the Ethoca or Verifi portal or using an API. Ethoca or Verifi takes the refund action notice and sends it back to the Issuer so they can advise the cardholder. The chargeback should be prevented.

How does Ethoca get alerts?

Is it based solely on the descriptor, or are there other data elements used?
Ethoca receives the alert notifications directly from the Issuer or card brand. This can come in thru an API or a Batch upload. Ethoca alerts are triggered by the merchant descriptor(s).

Do you consider a prefix as part of the descriptor when it’s being used during the payment process (for example: merchant to BlueSnap, BlueSnap to Processors, Processors to Acquiring Banks, Acquiring Banks to Card Brands, Card Brands to Issuer)?

A prefix is absolutely considered as part of the descriptor. It also allows BlueSnap to see data that is coming from Issuers that you may not have on the Ethoca or Verifi network.

Are there instances where things are duplicated?

It is possible to receive an alert for the same transaction from Ethoca and Verifi because a few Issuing banks provide alerts to both companies. However, once a transaction is refunded, BlueSnap does not allow a duplicate refund to be issued on the same transaction.

TC40 and SAFE

What does TC40 and SAFE do for me as a merchant in preventing fraud and chargebacks?

When a customer makes a fraud claim, the bank that issued their card creates a TC40 claim and then sends it to the acquirer, other issuing banks, and certain credit card brands including Visa and MasterCard.

  • Visa uses TC40 data as part of its Risk Identification Service (RIS).
  • MasterCard uses TC40 data as part of its System to Avoid Fraud Effectively (SAFE) report.

A TC40 claim is not a chargeback. Merchants can use TC40 data to help prevent chargebacks. It can take several days for a TC40 data claim to be released and the claim does not stop chargebacks from being filed. Therefore, merchants should not rely solely on TC40 data to defend against chargebacks.

What kinds of chargebacks are prevented through using the TC40 and SAFE services?

TC40 and SAFE alerts only deal with fraud claims. Just like Ethoca and Verifi, these alerts do not guarantee that a chargeback will not be issued even if the transaction is refunded.

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