Merchant Services Glossary

  • 3DES

    A highly secure encryption system that encrypts data 3 times, using 3 64-bit keys, for an overall encryption key length of 192 bits. Also called triple DES.
  • ABA – American Bankers Association

    The trade association of American bankers. This body also has the registration authority to assign identification numbers.
  • ABA Routing Number

    A unique nine-digit number assigned to each banking institution, used to identify the bank and direct ACH debits and credits. The ABA routing number is usually found at the bottom of a personal or business check.
  • Account Number

    A unique sequence of numbers assigned to a cardholder account that identifies the issuer and type of financial transaction card.
  • ACH

    A regional organization used by member banks to electronically transfer funds between members. 
  • Acquirer

    The financial institution that establishes and maintains the merchant account, receives transactions from the merchant, and initiates the interchange via VISA/MasterCard. The acquirer must be a licensed member of MasterCard or VISA. This can be the merchant's bank, in the case of credit cards or POS debit cards, or the ATM-owning bank in the case of ATM debit card transactions. Also called the acquiring bank.
  • Acquiring Bank/Merchant Bank

    The financial institution that enters an electronic transaction into the collection stream. The bank that does business with merchants enabling them to accept credit cards. A merchant has an account with this bank and each day deposits the value of the day's credit card sales. Acquirers buy (acquire) the merchant's sales slips and credit the tickets' value to the merchant's account.
  • Acquiring Processor

    The processor provides credit card processing, billing, reporting and settlement, and operational services to the acquirer. Many financial institutions hire a third party for more cost-effective bankcard processing. 
  • Address Verification (AVS)

    A service provided through merchant services in which the merchant verifies the cardholder's address. Primarily used by mail/telephone order merchants to combat fraud. Not a guarantee that a transaction is valid. 
  • American Express

    A company that specializes in the issuance of Travel and Entertainment (T&E) cards. American Express services the cards it issues, serving as its own transaction processor with its own processing network.
  • ASP

    Application Service Provider - an organization that hosts software applications on its own servers within its own facilities. Customers access the application via private lines or the Internet. Also called a "commercial service provider."
  • Assessments

    Fees paid quarterly by members to VISA and MasterCard to support marketing and operating activities.
  • Association

    MasterCard International, Visa U.S.A. or Visa International, which are licensing regulatory agencies for bankcard activities.
  • ATM/Debit Card

    The plastic card used in an ATM for deposits, cash withdrawals, account transfers and other related functions. A PIN must be entered to withdraw cash and access account functions. An ATM card may also be used to make a debit purchase if the merchant has a PIN pad to accept the key entry. 
  • Authentication

    A data security technique designed to ensure that the professed sender of a transaction is indeed the person they claim to be.
  • Authorization

    The act of ensuring the cardholder has adequate funds available against his or her line of credit. A positive authorization results in an authorization code being generated, and those funds being set aside. The cardholder's available credit limit is reduced by the authorized amount.
  • Authorization Approval Code

    The numerical code designated by the issuer, assigned to a sales transaction as verification that the sale is authorized.
  • Authorization Request

    A merchant's request for an authorization to accept a cardholder's sales transaction. An authorization request can occur electronically via a credit card processing terminal or via telephone as a voice authorization.
  • Average Ticket

    The average dollar amount of sale for credit card transactions.
  • AVS

    Address Verification Service - a service supported by Visa, MasterCard, Discover and American Express that verifies the cardholder's billing address against the one on file with the issuer. AVS is designed to help combat fraud in non-face-to-face transactions. For a list of AVS response codes, click here.
  • B2C

    Business to Consumer - refers to a business selling goods and services to consumers.
  • Back-End Network

    The settlement provider responsible for finalizing transactions, routing payment to a merchant's account and generating statements.
  • Bank Identification Number (BIN)

    A unique series of numbers assigned by MasterCard or VISA to a principal member institution that identifies the member in transaction processing. It is the first three to six digits of a standard cardholder account number and can be used by the member's affiliates, if necessary.
  • Bank Routing Number

    The first nine digits that appear across the bottom of a personal check; they identify the financial institution.
  • Bankcard

    A card issued by a banking institution with a MasterCard or Visa brand.
  • Bankcard Association

    A group of institutions formed for sponsoring a bankcard program, using a common processing and administrative center.
  • Batch

    A group of accumulated transactions that have been captured, but not yet settled. Most merchants settle their batches at the end of each day.
  • Batch Deposit

    The electronic depositing of a batch file transmitted to the transaction processor for settlement.
  • Batch Header Ticket

    The identifying form used by the electronic submission merchant to indicate a batch of sales/credit slips (usually one day's work).
  • Batch Processing

    The authorization of transactions offline when immediate approval is not required. Transactions are collected in a batch and sent as one transmission for authorization and/or settlement. Batch processing is generally used with mail/telephone order transactions.
  • BIN

    Bank Identification Number - a unique series of numbers assigned by Visa/MasterCard to a member institution, which identifies that institution in transaction processing. The BIN comprises the first six digits of a standard credit card number.
  • Business Card

    A payment card typically issued to and used by owners of small businesses. 
  • Capture

    Converting the authorization amount into a billable transaction record within a batch. Transactions cannot be captured unless previously authorized and the goods or services have been shipped or transmitted to the consumer.
  • Capture Date

    The date on which a transaction is processed by an acquirer.
  • Card Associations

    Payment networks such as VISA® or MasterCard® (and others) that act as gateways between acquirers and issuers for authorizing and funding transactions.
  • Card Not Present

    A type of card transaction in which the card is not present at the point of sale for the magnetic stripe to be read. These are considered higher risk transactions.
  • Card Present

    A type of transaction in which the card is present and is swiped through an electronic device that reads the contents of the magnetic stripe on the back of the card.
  • Card Reader

    Input device on a card terminal that translates the information stored on the magnetic stripe on the back of a card.
  • Cardholder

    The person to whom a payment card is issued, or an additional person authorized by the original cardholder to use the card.
  • Cardholder Bank

    The bank that has issued a bankcard to an individual. The term is frequently used in conjunction with interchange arrangement to identify the card-issuing bank.
  • Cardholder Initiated Chargeback

    A chargeback that results when a cardholder contacts the card issuer and refuses to accept a charge appearing on a monthly billing statement. A cardholder has 90 days to initiate a chargeback.
  • CDPD

    Cellular Digital Packet Data - a method of sending data through cellular networks. CDPD is used with wireless credit card terminals to transmit transactions and deposits in mobile environments.
  • Charge Back

    A transaction that has been disputed by the cardholder or issuer is sent back through interchange to the acquirer, and must be resolved by either the acquirer or the merchant. A reversal of a credit card transaction, typically initiated by the transaction card issuer at the cardholder's request. Charge backs can occur for any number of reasons, including: customer disputes, potential or actual fraud (on the part of merchants, sales associates and/or customers), processing errors and authorization issues. Charge backs are governed by a complex set of rules and time limits that can be costly to merchants and their banks if disregarded.
  • Charge Back Fee

    The amount assessed by the acquirer for processing chargebacks.
  • Charge Back Period

    The number of calendar days (counted from the transaction processing date) during which the issuer has the right to charge the transaction back to the acquirer. The number of days varies according to the type of transaction from 45 to 180 days.
  • Charge Back Reason Code

    A numerical code which identifies the specific reason for a chargeback. MasterCard and Visa each have their own chargeback codes.
  • Check Card

    A bankcard that enables the user to purchase goods and services and obtain cash disbursements against his or her asset account (generally a checking account). The check card is also called an 'offline debit card' or 'deposit access card.'
  • Check Conversion

    A check protection service by which a merchant scans a check image and converts it into an electronic transaction, similar to a PIN-based debit, for which the merchant is paid immediately. Check conversion requires a check imager peripheral.
  • Check Guarantee

    A service provided by a third party vendor who guarantees a customer's payment by check for an amount. Stipulations require that the merchant follow correct authorization procedures. A check protection service by which a merchant guarantees he or she will receive payment for a check, even in the event of insufficient funds. Check guarantee requires a check reader peripheral.
  • Check Reader

    A device that reads the numbers encrypted on the bottom of most checks. 
  • Check Truncation

    A generic term used to describe the conversion of a paper check to an electronic payment or digitized image for clearing, posting and settlement. These transactions can be governed by paper check or EFT laws.
  • Check Verification

    A service used to verify that a check writer and/or their checking account information is valid, and/or the account is in good standing.
  • Checks by Phone

    A system that allows consumers to provide their checking account information to a merchant over the phone and a duplicate check (paper draft or electronic check) is created for payment. 
  • Clearing

    The exchange of transaction details between an acquirer and an issuer which posts the transaction to the cardholder’s account and reconciles it for settlement.
  • Clearing Account

    An account at the clearing bank that will receive a member's credit or debit for net settlement.
  • Close

    Sending a merchant's completed transactions to the host for processing.
  • Code 10 Authorization

    If the POS device reads "Lost or Stolen Card," or "Pick Up Card" or a similar message, the merchant should call the authorization center for a Code 10 Authorization. The operator will ask questions to determine if the transaction is valid.
  • Corporate Card

    A bankcard issued to companies for use by company employees. The liability for abuse of the card typically rests with the company and not with the employee.
  • Credit Card

    A plastic card with a credit limit used to purchase goods and services and to obtain cash advances on credit. The cardholder is then billed by the issuer for repayment of the credit extended.
  • Credit Limit

    The maximum amount the cardholder may owe to the issuer on the card account at any time.
  • CTMF

    Combined Terminated Merchant File
  • CVC2

    See CVV2. Card verification code 2 (CVC2) is MasterCard’s term for this security code.
  • CVC2

    Card Validation Code - MasterCard term for the three-digit code printed next to the card number in the signature panel and used as part of the authorization process. 
  • CVV2

    Card verification value 2. CVV2—a 3 digit code printed on the back of a Visa card—is an important security feature that protects Internet and phone transactions from fraud. CVV2 ensures that the credit card number is legitimate and that the card is in the possession of the purchaser.
  • CVV2

    Card Verification Value - Visa term for the three-digit code printed next to the card number in the signature panel and used as part of the authorization process. 
  • Data Capture

    The collection, formatting, and storage of information in computer memory. Some point-of-sale terminals perform data capture functions. See EDC Terminal.
  • Data Encryption Key

    Used for the encryption of message text and for the computation of message integrity checks (signatures). 
  • DBA

    Doing Business As - the name a business uses to operate.
  • DDA

    Demand Deposit Account - a checking account.
  • Debit

    A charge to a customer's bankcard account.
  • Debit Card

    A bankcard used to purchase goods and services and to obtain cash, which debits the cardholder's personal checking account. During online debit transactions, the cardholder must enter a PIN.
  • Debit Switch

    A portal that transmits debit data between gateway banks and debit card issuers - also referred to as "Debit Network." Only financial institutions may be members of debit switches.
  • Debit Transaction

    A bankcard used to purchase goods and services and to obtain cash, which debits the cardholder's personal deposit account.
  • Decline

    A response from the card issuer denying the use of the card for the attempted transaction. If a request for approval is declined, the merchant must ask the cardholder for another form of payment.
  • Dial up Line

    A communications medium described as a non-dedicated telephone line, in which a connection is established by dialing a destination number and broken when the call is complete. This is the same type of phone line that you use at home.
  • Dial up Terminal

    An authorization terminal that (like a telephone) dials the authorization center for validation of transactions.
  • Digital Certificate

    An encrypted attachment to an electronic message, used for security purposes. The most common use of a digital certificate is to verify that a user sending a message is who he or she claims to be. The receiver is also provided with a way to encode a reply.
  • DIP Switches

    Dual In-Line Package Switches - a series of connected switches that determine the proper configuration for a payment card terminal printer.
  • Discount Rate

    The amount charged to a merchant by the acquirer for processing the merchant’s daily credit card transactions.

    Derived Unique Key Per Transaction - a method of PIN pad encryption. 
  • EBT

    Electronic Benefits Transfer - the automation of government benefits through electronic authorization, data capture and settlement processes. Plastic cards with
  • ECP

    Electronic Check Presentment, is the transmission of the contents of a cash letter (based on MICR line capture) to a paying bank in advance of physical delivery of the (paper) cash letter, or as a result of the truncation of the cash letter items.
  • ECR

    Electronic Cash Register - a cash register that also emulates a point-of-sale terminal for processing credit card transactions.
  • EDC

    Electronic Draft Capture - the use of a point-of-sale device to authorize and settle credit card transactions.
  • Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT)

    A government-funded cash assistance program that distributes payments such as Food Stamps and Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) on cards that can be swiped and used with POS terminals.
  • Electronic Cash Register

    A system which functions most efficiently and effectively for large businesses with many registers in single or multiple locations. Provides a direct, computer-to-computer linkup between the processor host and the merchant's host.
  • Electronic Check

    Generic term for any payment that begins as a paper check and is subsequently converted to an ACH transaction for electronic clearing and settlement. Also known as an E-Check.
  • Electronic Check Acceptance

    A system that captures banking information off a paper check and converts it into an electronic item processed through the Automated Clearing House network. With ECA, checks are processed similarly to credit cards, and the paper check is returned to the consumer at the point of sale.
  • Electronic Commerce

    The transacting of business electronically rather than via paper.
  • Electronic Data Interchange

    The electronic communication of business transactions; specifically the exchange of trade-related documents, such as purchase orders, invoices and corporate Electronic Funds Transfer (EFTs) in a standard format. With EDI, electronically transmitted data replaces paper documents in the business accounts receivable cycle.
  • Electronic Draft Capture

    Also referred to as Electronic Data Capture terminal. A point-of-sale device that reads information encoded in the bankcard's magnetic stripe, performs authorization functions, stores transaction data, and batches and transmits that data to the acquirer for processing. The stored transactions are used to create settlement files and transaction reports.
  • Electronic Financial Services

    Financial services that are provided via electronic delivery channels (e.g. PCs, telephones, screen phones and ATMs). These services may be transaction and/or information oriented and may be provided by bank and non-bank providers.
  • Electronic Funds Transfer

    A transfer of funds between accounts by electronic means rather than conventional paper-based payment methods. EFT is any financial transaction originating from a telephone or electronic terminal, or from a computer or magnetic tape. 
  • Electronic Funds Transfer at Point of Sale

    The technology and practice of making payments for goods and services by means of electronic funds transfer initiated at the point where goods and services are purchased. 
  • Encryption

    The technique of scrambling data automatically in the terminal or computer before data is transmitted for security/anti-fraud purposes. 
  • Entitlement

    License or permission to accept a particular type of payment card or other payment vehicle.

    Erasable Programmable Read Only Memory - industry-initiated standards used to identify terminal types and components.
  • Expiration Date

    The date embossed on a bankcard, beyond which the card becomes invalid.
  • Factoring

    When a legitimate merchant processes another merchant's transactions in return for payment. This practice is forbidden by the associations.
  • FI

    Financial institution, a federally insured bank, thrift or credit union.
  • Financial EDI

    Electronic exchange of payments, payment information or financially related documents in standard formats between business partners.
  • Financial Institution

    Any organization in the business of moving, investing or lending money, dealing in financial instruments, or providing financial services. This includes commercial banks, thrifts, federal and state savings banks, saving and loan associations, and credit unions.
  • Fleet Card

    Payment card designed mainly for fueling, maintenance and repairs of corporate motor vehicles. Fleet cards are normally used to provide specialized reporting.
  • Floor Limit

    A dollar amount set by the acquirer in accordance with MasterCard and VISA rules and regulations. The merchant must obtain authorization for any transaction over the floor limit.
  • Forced Transaction

    The after-the-fact entry of a purchase resulting from a referral ('call Authorization Center') message or a downtime interruption of service from a Network which enables the merchant to enter (as a force/post authorization) the transaction and the approval code into the EDC batch.
  • Fraud Investigation

    The process of identifying suspicious merchant or cardholder activity.
  • Front End Network

    Network provider responsible for authorizing and capturing transactions and forwarding the information to the back-end network.
  • Fulfillment

    The acquirer's response to an issuer's retrieval request for a sales draft. The acquirer supplies the issuer with the original draft or a clear reproduction. The fulfillment record confirms the response and initiates reimbursement to the acquirer for fulfilling the request.
  • Funding

    Refers to the payment to a merchant for his submitted deposits.
  • Gateway

    Manages the electronic connection between consumers and their financial institutions and transmits data.
  • Gift Card

    A reusable, stored-value card that enables merchants to have an electronic alternative to paper gift certificates.
  • Gross Deposit

    Submitting bankcard sales and credits at the face amount. The acquirer later deducts the discount.
  • Hard Copy

    The original document of a transaction, such as sales drafts, credit slips, etc.
  • Hard Decline

    A declined authorization attempt resulting from a lost or stolen card, pick-up card, etc. A Code 10 call should be made by the merchant to the authorization center.
  • HCS

    Host Capture System - a transaction is transmitted with an authorization request to the host computer at the front end, the information is captured at the host, then sent back to the POS device. Since the information is already stored at the host, it can be settled without the merchant performing a settlement function. 
  • Hot Card

    A card account on which excessive use is occurring often an indication that the card (or account number) has been stolen.
  • Idle Prompt

    The standard display on a payment card terminal waiting to process the next transaction.
  • Imprinter

    A manual device used to imprint embossed card information onto sales drafts for transaction records. An imprinter only captures card information; it cannot authorize a transaction. Imprinters are primarily used as a backup when the other processing equipment is unable to read data on the card’s magnetic stripe. For merchants without an electronic printer, an imprint is needed to prove a card was present if a customer disputes a key-entered transaction.
  • Independent Sales Organization

    Also called a member service provider. An outside company (not MasterCard or VISA member) which is contracted by members to sell merchant and/or cardholder account processing.
  • Interactive Voice Response

    The process in which the voice processing system prompts the caller for information which can then be used as a search key to a database. The result of the search is subsequently reported back to the caller. A typical and most common application of IVR is in the banking system. A caller calls the bank's IVR lines, enters an account number, and receives information such as account balance, last check cleared, etc.
  • Interchange

    The process of authorization and settlement of card transactions through VISA or MasterCard. Interchange includes the transmittal of cardholder information, transaction data, and fees. The amount card associations charge acquirers for each card transaction they process. The card associations pay the interchange fee to the issuer as compensation for expenses incurred in providing lines of credit to cardholders. The acquirer’s cost is passed on to merchants as a part of the discount rate.
  • Interchange Fees

    Fees paid by the acquirer to the issuer to compensate for transaction-related costs. MasterCard and Visa establish interchange fee rates.
  • Issuer

    The financial institution that issues a credit card to a cardholder. The issuer must be a licensed member of MasterCard or VISA. Also called the issuing bank.
  • Magnetic Information Character Recognition

    Imprinted banking numbers (routing/transit number, checking account number, check number) at the bottom of the check. 
  • Magnetic Stripe

    A stripe (on the bankcard) of magnetically encoded cardholder account information affixed to a plastic card. 
  • Magnetic Stripe Reader

    A point-of-sale device that reads the encoded information from the magnetic stripe when the card is passed through the reader. Readers may read Track Two, which contains the cardholder account number and expiration date, or both Track Two and Track One, which contains the cardholder name.
  • Mail Order

    Merchants involved in the direct marketing catalog industry.
  • MasterCard

    A member-owned international bankcard association, governed by a board of directors, which licenses members to issue cards or accept merchant drafts under the MasterCard Program. MasterCard owns and operates its own international processing network.
  • Member

    A financial institution which is a member of VISA USA and/or MasterCard International. A member is licensed to issue cards to cardholders and/or accept merchant drafts.
  • Merchant

    A business that has contracted with an acquirer for card processing services and accepts credit cards as a method of payment for goods or services.
  • Merchant Account

    The contract between a merchant and an acquiring bank for providing card processing services.
  • Merchant Acquirer

    A member that has entered into an agreement with a merchant to accept deposits generated by bankcard transactions; also called the acquirer or acquiring bank.
  • Merchant Agreement

    The written contract between the merchant and acquirer that details their respective rights, responsibilities and warranties.
  • Merchant Category Code

    MCC - a universal four-digit merchant classification code that identifies the merchant by type of processing, authorization and settlement. Similar to a Standard Industrial Classification (SIC), but more defined.
  • Merchant Number

    A number that numerically identifies each merchant to the merchant processor for accounting and billing purposes.
  • Message Authentication Code (MAC)

    A data security feature that produces a unique code for every digital message that allows the recipient to verify that data has not been altered since being transmitted by the sender.
  • MICR Number

    Magnetic Ink Character Recognition - the bank routing and transit, checking account number and check number encoded at the bottom of a check that can be used to authorize the check.
  • MICR Number Method

    A check authorization procedure that uses the bank routing/transit numbers, checking account numbers and check number encoded along the bottom of the check.
  • MID

    Merchant Identification Number - The identification number assigned to a merchant by the acquirer.

    National Automated Clearinghouse Association, an association that promotes electronic payments through the establishment of industry rules, standards and procedures for the exchange of ACH items.
  • National Automated Clearing House Association

    National Automated Clearing House Association (NACHA) - The national association that establishes the standards, rules and procedures that enable depository financial institutions to exchange ACH payments on a national basis.
  • Negative File

    A collection of records (cardholder accounts) containing all accounts on which charge privileges have been revoked and/or require a voice authorization.
  • Net Payment

    Payment to the merchant for sales drafts less credits minus the appropriate discount fee.
  • Net Revenue

    Discount income less interchange expense, association dues, fees and assessments.
  • Net Settlement

    The settlement, through an actual transfer of funds, of the net effect of a series of financial transactions involving customers of two or more banks.
  • Network Service Provider

    A terminal-centered system that allows the merchant to obtain authorization and/or data captured through the network. A third party vendor who provides authorization network services such as Banknet, VISANet, and NDC.
  • Non Bank

    In a payment system, a financial institution not offering retail banking services.
  • Non Face to Face Transaction

    Any transaction in which the card is not presented, such as a phone, mail or Internet purchase.
  • Offline Debit

    Debit transaction that occurs when a Visa/MasterCard check card is authorized through the credit card system and the amount is debited from the cardholder's checking (DDA) account.
  • Offline Transaction

    A transaction that is authorized through a voice authorization and later keyed into a POS terminal prior to settlement.
  • Online Debit

    Debit card transactions that are instantly debited from the cardholder's bank account. No signature is required. A pin pad is required at the point of sale. Cash back is available and the funds are guaranteed.
  • Online Payment Gateway

    An Internet-based portal used for processing card transactions. Brick-and-mortar merchants may use an online payment gateway to process card transactions online without a POS terminal or card processing software. Online merchants must have an online payment gateway to enable their business for ecommerce. Also called a virtual terminal.
  • Online Transaction

    A transaction that is authorized electronically from the front-end network.
  • Operating Rules

    Rules and business practices meant to increase consistency and interoperability among the various financial service providers that will interact with each other and end-users.
  • Original Draft

    The actual bank copy of the form used in the transaction. Also referred to as the 'hard copy.'  PIN - Personal Identification Number - The confidential individual number or code used by a cardholder to authenticate card ownership for ATM or POS terminal transactions.
  • PIN Authorization Request

    A procedure enabling the issuer to validate cardholder identity by comparing the PIN to the account numbers.
  • Point of Sale

    An electronic system that accepts financial data at or near a retail selling location and transmits that data to a computer or authorization network for reporting activity, authorization and transaction logging.
  • POS Terminal

    A device used to record and transmit card transactions electronically for authorization and processing. POS terminals can transmit information via a regular telephone line, broadband Internet connection, or wireless signal. Also called a card processing terminal.
  • POS

    Point Of Sale - the location at which a payment card transaction occurs, usually by way of a device such as a credit card terminal or cash register.
  • Presentment

    The process by which the acquirer sends the transaction to the issuer for reimbursement.
  • Principal Member

    A financial institution that directly participates as an issuing and/or acquiring member of MasterCard International.
  • Private Label Card

    A retailer's proprietary card. Accepted only at that merchant's retail establishments. An example would be a department store credit card.
  • Processing

    Is a term used to describe the management of payment transaction flows.
  • Processing Date

    The earliest date stamped on the transmittal summary and draft by the member or its processor.
  • Processing Fees

    The fees associated with the processing of credit card transactions.
  • Processor

    A company responsible for processing interchange transactions - operated by an acquirer or acting on the acquirer's behalf.
  • Purchasing Card

    Designed to help companies maintain control of small purchases while reducing the administrative cost associated with authorizing, tracking, paying and reconciling those purchases.
  • R/T Number

    Routing Transit Number, also known as the ABA Number, is a nine-digit number contained in a check's MICR line identifying the financial institution on which a check has been drawn. Also known by the acronym RTN.
  • RAM

    Random Access Memory - short-term memory for a computer or payment card terminal.
  • RCK

    Represented Check Entry, an ACH transaction format for collecting funds represented by a paper check returned for insufficient or uncollected funds.
  • Reason Code

    A two-digit code identifying the reason a chargeback was initiated.
  • Re-authorization

    To request an additional amount to be authorized on an existing transaction. Used in the lodging industry when the original authorization is not sufficient to cover the charges.
  • Receipt

    A hard copy description of the transaction that took place at the point-of-sale, containing at minimum: date, merchant name/location, primary account number, type of account accessed, amount, reference number, and an action code.
  • Recurring Transaction

    A transaction charged to a cardholder's account (with prior permission) on a periodic basis for recurring goods and services, i.e., health club memberships.
  • Refund

    A refund occurs when the merchant rebates all, or a portion, of an original transaction amount to the cardholder. Refunds are made to the same card that was used for the original transaction. Similar to a Credit.
  • Regional Network

    A network which processes debit transactions for financial institutions and retailers in a given geographic area. Regional networks are not part of the national interchange system.
  • Representment

    A transaction presented to the issuer by the acquirer, when the merchant requests a reversal of a chargeback.
  • Retail Transaction

    A face-to-face transaction in which the cardholder presents a card to the merchant to pay for goods or services.
  • Retrieval Request

    A request by the issuer to the acquirer for a copy of the original sales ticket.
  • Reversal

    When an acquirer successfully represents a chargeback to the issuer, the chargeback is reversed and the funds are returned to the merchant.
  • RS232

    The standard port on POS device used to support a wireless transmission via VSAT, Frame, VPN or Motient. May also be used with various peripheral devices i.e. Check Reader or Personal Computer.
  • Sales Draft

    Paper documentation of a transaction. Also called a sales slip, charge slip, or hard copy.
  • Secure Socket Layer

    A Web-based technology that lets one computer verify another's identity and allows secure connections.
  • Secure Socket Layer (SSL)

    A security feature that keeps Internet communications private and ensures they have not been forged or tampered with.
  • Security

    The area within Credit/Risk Management tasked with monitoring the performance of the entire active portfolio by means of exception reports identifying, investigating and monitoring suspect accounts for fraud-related activities.
  • Serial Port

    The place on the back of your computer where you plug in your modem. Also called a communications port or comm port.
  • Settlement

    The exchanging of data or funds between the acquirer and the issuer. Settlement includes funding the merchant for the transaction and paying any necessary fees due to the issuer or acquirer for processing the transaction.
  • Settlement Statement

    A document issued to the merchant, indicating the sales and credit activity, billing information, discount fee and chargebacks (if any) occurring during a particular time frame (one week, one month).
  • Shopping Cart Software

    A software application needed for ecommerce and online transaction processing. Shopping cart software collects the items a cardholder selects for purchase, maintains a running total, and may calculate taxes and shipping.
  • Shopping Cart Software

    Shopping cart software allows the cardholder to select items from an online store and place them in a 'virtual shopping basket' or 'shopping cart.' The shopping cart remembers which items are selected while the cardholder views other items within the 'virtual storefront,' keeps a running total, and may calculate taxes and shipping. The items in the shopping cart are eventually ordered if the cardholder chooses.
  • SIC

    Standard Industrial Code - a universal four-digit code that designates a merchant's industry type. Similar to an MCC code.
  • Smart Card

    A payment card with a built-in microprocessor (chip) that stores information. Smart cards can be used for stored-value cards, credit cards, loyalty
  • Split Dial

    The capability of a card terminal to dial different telephone numbers to obtain an authorization or settlement of different card types.
  • Split Dial Authorization

    A process allowing the authorization terminal to dial directly to different card processors (e.g. American Express) for 'authorization.' In this instance, the merchant cannot be both EDC and Split Dial. Split Dial is also utilized for Check Guarantee companies.
  • Start up Kit

    Supplies shipped to new merchants including sales slips, credit slips, batch header tickets, return envelopes, VISA/MasterCard decals, merchant plastics, imprinter slugs and instructional materials.
  • Stored Value Card

    A pre-paid payment card that stores a monetary value from which the purchase amount is deducted from the card each time the card is used.
  • Submission

    The process of sending batch deposits for processing. This may be done electronically or by mail.
  • Summary Adjustment

    Summary Adjustment - A correction to a deposit, made by the acquirer, when there is an error in the submitted deposit.
  • Support Documentation

    Support Documentation - The forms necessary to effect a chargeback processing cycle, and any additional material to uphold a dispute.
  • Suspect Transaction

    Suspect Transaction - A transaction that occurs one day prior to or following the account number being listed in the combined Warning Bulletin or listed as pickup card.
  • T&E Cards

    T&E Cards - Cards that are developed for and used primarily in travel-related services.
  • T&E Merchant

    T&E Merchant - An airline, car rental company or lodging establishment with a primary function of providing travel-related services.
  • TCP/IP

    TCP/IP - The system networks use to communicate with each other on the Internet. It stands for Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol.
  • TCS

    TCS - Terminal Capture System - the process in which transactions are stored in the terminal until the batch is settled to the host. Most often used in restaurant applications where tip adjustments need to be made.
  • Terminal Based

    Terminal Based - A system that captures card transactions and holds them until settlement.
  • Terminated Merchant File

    Terminated Merchant File (TMF) - A file listing the names of merchants and their principals whose bankcard relationships have been terminated for some reason by an acquirer. Operated jointly by VISA and MasterCard.
  • Third Party Processing

    Third-Party Processing - Processing of transactions by service providers acting under contract to card issuers or acquirers.
  • Third Party Processor

    Third Party Processor - A company that processes ACH files and transactions on behalf of banks or other participants to those transactions.
  • Ticket

    Ticket - Another name for the sales slip or its 'monetary value' that results when a credit card purchase is made.
  • TID

    TID - Terminal Identification Number - number identifying a merchant to the front-end network.
  • Track One

    Track One - Track One information, stored on the magnetic stripe on the back of a card, has the cardholder's name in addition to the account number and expiration date stored in it.
  • Track Two

    Track Two - Track Two information, stored on the magnetic stripe on the back of a card, has the account number and expiration date.
  • Transaction

    Transaction - Any action between a cardholder and a merchant or member that results in activity on the account, such as a purchase, cash advance or credit.
  • Transaction Date

    Transaction Date - The actual date on which a transaction occurs.
  • Transaction Fee

    Transaction Fee - The amount a merchant pays per transaction for processing
  • Valid Date

    Valid Date - The date embossed on a payment card stating when the card may first be used.
  • Virtual Terminal

    An Internet-based portal used for processing card transactions. Brick-and-mortar merchants may use an online payment gateway to process card transactions online without a POS terminal or card processing software. Online merchants must have an online payment gateway to enable their business for ecommerce. Also called an online payment gateway.
  • VISA

    Visa USA - A member-owned national bankcard association, governed by a board of directors, which licenses members to issue cards and accept merchant drafts under the Visa Program. MasterCard owns and operates its own international processing network.
  • VISANet

    Visanet - The data processing systems, networks, and operations used to support and deliver authorization services, exception file services, and clearing and settlement services.
  • Voice Authorization

    Voice Authorization - Transactions authorized by a voice operator. Voice-approved transactions must be "forced" into a terminal batch for settlement.
  • Voice Response Unit

    Voice Response Unit (VRU) - An automated authorization support system for touch-tone telephones.