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Saturday, July 01, 2006

Fraud Prevention Tips

Courtesy of the DPL-Surveillance-Equipment.com Loss Prevention Team

Current areas where mail order, telephone order, and Internet fraud are most prevalent include:

* West Africa (Nigeria, Ghana, Gambia), Asia (Indonesia, Singapore)

* Eastern Europe (Bulgaria, Romania, and Russia)

Suspicious Behavior and Unusual Requests

Relay Calls: A relay call is an operator-assisted telephone call, usually used by someone who is hearing impaired. While this is a valid service, criminals are also using the service to place fraudulent orders.

Customers Ordering Large Quantities of the Same or Similar Item:

Customers who provide multiple card numbers for the same purchase, especially when the card numbers are only different by the last few numbers.

Requests for Overnight Delivery, Without Regard to Cost:

Customers who request immediate processing of the order and want the tracking number used for the shipment ASAP.

Customers who place phone orders, requesting immediate processing of the order, and then advising they will have someone come to the store location to pick-up the product.

Requests for delivery to an alternate address, other than the billing address, or shipment to a freight forwarder. (Criminals will use United States based re-shippers to avoid detection of foreign shipments).

Requests for merchandise you do not sell. Most common requests are for cell phones and laptop computers.

Business Communication via a free email service (Yahoo, Hotmail, Gmail, etc).

NOTE: With today's technology it is possible to alter a photocopy of a credit card or personal identification such as a driver's license or passport. Sometimes a fraud order will include a faxed or e-mailed photocopy of the card to gain your trust. These photocopies do not guarantee that you are dealing with the correct cardholder. Always verify the order information with your Authorization center before proceeding with the order.

Four Quick Prevention Steps:

1. Before processing an order obtained via relay call, contact your Voice Authorization Center or place a direct call to the credit card issuer.

2. Verify the cardholder's address by using the Address Verification System (AVS). Your terminal can be set up for the AVS program, which allows you to include an AVS request with an authorization request. You will receive a result code indicating whether the address given matches the address the issuer has on file for that account.

3. Card Verification Value (CVV2) VISA and Card Validation Code (CVC2) MASTERCARD are verification requests that can be added to most terminals. This system will verify the three-digit code printed on the back of a credit card (or four-digit code printed on the front of an American Express credit card). You will receive either a "match" or "no match" response from the card-issuing bank if CVV2 is provided at the time of the authorization.

4. Authorizations: Get authorization for the full amount of the sale. Do not split a declined transaction into smaller increments to obtain an authorization. If an authorization request is declined, request another form of payment other than a credit card. (Be aware that there are counterfeit check schemes that involve overpayment with a counterfeit check and a request to wire the difference to the overseas customer. This causes a loss of both the merchandise ordered and the money that made up the difference.) An authorization code does not guarantee that a transaction will not be disputed later. An authorization code simply identifies that the amount of credit requested for this particular transaction is available on the card. An authorization code does not protect you in the event of a Chargeback regarding unauthorized transactions or disputes involving the quality or delivery of goods and services.

NOTE: Use of CVV2, CVC2, and AVS can lessen a non face-to-face transaction's risk of fraud by providing better information on which you can make a better business decision. However, CVV2, CVC2, and AVS do not eliminate Chargebacks, nor absolve the merchant of their liability for Chargebacks associated with processing credit card transactions. For more information about AVS and CVV2, CVC2, contact 1-800-725-1243. If you are an Internet merchant, contact your web provider for additional fraud settings that may be available to you through their service.

Useful Numbers and Websites:

MerchantConnect.com: This site was created by NOVA Merchant Services to provide you with information on your account. On your first visit, you will need to choose a user name and password. You can view statements, Chargebacks, and general information, as well as helpful tips about processing credit cards.

VISA Merchant Verification Service-800-847-2750-AUTOMATED
Option 1, Address Verification: enter in the numeric portion of the street address, zip code, and VISA card number, and it will advise you if there is a match
Option 2, Issuing Bank Phone numbers: enter the VISA card number and it will provide you with the 800# for Issuing banks if available.

MasterCard Assist-800-622-7747
Select your language preference, then Option 2. Enter the MasterCard card number and it will provide you with the 800# for Issuing banks if available.

Discover Address Verification-800-347-7988-AUTOMATED
You will need your Discover Merchant number. Enter the Discover card number and address information, and it will advise you if there is a match.

American Express Address Verifications-800-528-2121
Option 3 allows you to verify the name and address of a particular AMEX card number.

Visa.com:VISA brand information. Includes tips, regulations, news, and fraud features. (Choose option for Merchants/Businesses)

Mastercard.com: MasterCard brand information. Includes tips, regulations, news, and fraud features. (Choose option for Merchants)

United States Postal Service: website, will check to validate an address physically exists. This does not confirm that a person lives at the address, but does confirm the address is real.

Internet Fraud Complaint Center (IFCC) The IFCC is a partnership between the FBI and the National White Collar Crime Center. This site allows victims of Internet fraud to report fraud online to the appropriate law enforcement and regulatory authorities.

FreightForwarders.com: This is a list of freight forwarders, many times international criminals will ship to these addresses and have the order sent on.

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