|Mon May 25 2009 22:31:48|
Note to eBay Sellers with Credit Card Merchant Accounts
By: Ina Steiner
eBay requires sellers who have credit card merchant accounts to use its Payflow Gateway Service (at no extra cost) to allow buyers to enter their credit card information directly and securely in eBay checkout. (Note that sellers are not required to use eBay Checkout, but those merchants who wish to use their credit card merchant account on eBay Checkout are required to use the Payflow Gateway Service.) A merchant who is going to begin using eBay's Payflow Gateway beginning in June wrote to me with concerns about what eBay and PayPal were telling him about the security features of the system.
He wrote, "What seems to me to be not widely known is that the Payflow gateway PayPal setup to be able to offer a charge card processing gateway for eBay sellers is not same Payflow gateway PayPal is already offering (in fact, many PayPal Payflow representatives are woefully unfamiliar with the eBay version; see below). It is a stripped down version, meaning the gateway has no fraud detection or prevention features and those features cannot be added even if an eBay Payflow user wanted to add them for a fee. Apparently, eBay did not spec those features as requirements or eBay and PayPal decided the eBay version of the gateway did not need them. That means, at the very least, eBay sellers that use the eBay PayPal Payflow gateway cannot require CVC numbers and use AVS on the transactions that flow through the eBay Payflow gateway.
"After spending a total of nearly two hours on the phone on four separate occasions with six different Payflow representatives, I finally received this message from Payflow support this evening: Fraud Protection is not available on the Payflow account when your partner is eBay."
I contacted PayPal and asked them some questions, here are the answers:
"Is the PayPal Payflow gateway for eBay sellers the same Payflow gateway PayPal is already offering?"
"Does the Payflow gateway for eBay offer the same fraud detection and prevention features?"
No. eBay provides a set of strong fraud control features that best suit the individual seller. These are the same set of fraud detection and prevention features that we use for credit card fee payments to eBay. This includes velocity checks, eBay credit card blacklists, and account limits.
Please note that the seller also benefits from any fraud detection and prevention features offered by his/her credit card processor.
"Can merchants require CVC numbers and use AVS on the transactions that flow through the eBay Payflow gateway?"
Yes, by the end of June, sellers using the Payflow gateway for eBay will be able to block credit card payments that don't pass CVV2 or AVS checks. We agree this is an important control for sellers.
If you have additional questions or concerns, please post them here in the comments. You can read more about eBay's requirements around merchant accounts and its checkout system in these August 2008 FAQs.