Visa Program Combats Friendly Fraud Losses For Small Businesses Globally
Today, Visa Inc. (NYSE:V), a world leader in digital payments, spotlighted the evolution of its dispute program, making it easier for merchants to fight first-party misuse, also known as friendly fraud or first-party fraud, for card-not-present transactions. This change could save small businesses over a billion dollars in losses globally over the next five years, in turn benefitting the entire ecosystem of consumers and merchants.
The rule change gives merchants more ways to show a disputed charge is valid and authorized, helping business owners keep money that is rightfully theirs, while protecting legitimate cardholder activity.
The impact of first-party fraud can be devastating for small businesses. “This rule change is going to be a gamechanger for my business,” said Kaseedee Pilarz, owner of PilatesBKLYN, a duo of fitness studios in Brooklyn, NY. “I have been in tough situations where legitimate membership charges have been disputed. If I lose the dispute, not only do I lose the membership fee, I also get a penalty. That can be the difference between making payroll or not. This change will help ensure I have a fair shot during those disputes.”
“The change we’ve made to our dispute process is an important part of our strategy for fighting all types of fraud on the Visa network,” said Paul Fabara, Chief Risk Officer, Visa. “The dramatic rise in first-party fraud rates necessitated this change. We’re proud of the work that we do, not only to prevent fraud across the ecosystem, but also to empower small merchants to fight for payments they’ve rightfully earned through legitimate transactions. With this announcement, however, we also remain steadfast in our commitment to protecting innocent consumers from fraud, including Visa’s overall commitment to zero-liability for cardholders for unauthorized transactions.”
“Without the kind of resources that larger organizations have, small businesses are significantly more at risk for debilitating fraud-related losses. Mitigating first-party fraud requires collaborative partnerships,” said Julie Fergerson, CEO, Merchant Risk Council, the global non-profit organization connecting eCommerce fraud prevention and payments professionals. “We share Visa’s commitment to reduce this threat to merchants and believe this rule change signifies historic progress.”
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