Reduce Fraudulent Losses with an Address Verification System (AVS) Filter
In many ways, using credit cards is a lot safer than using cash: Paper money is easier to steal — but it can't be easily replaced. By contrast, most credit card issuers provide varying levels of fraud protection.
However, plastic can't protect you from all types of theft.
In fact, it's not terribly difficult to steal another person's name and credit card number. Every time you pay for a meal at a restaurant, the waiter walks off with your card and runs it through the machine. During those few moments, anyone can get a good look at the front and back of your card and use that stolen information hours, weeks or even months later.
The longer the delay, the harder it is to catch that criminal.
Even if you're extremely careful with your own credit cards, there's no guarantee that your customers are as cautious with theirs. As such, your payment environment is at risk if any criminal decides to make unauthorized purchases using information he or she easily obtained by looking at someone else's credit card.
This is why we include the Address Verification System (AVS) Filter in our suite of fraud management tools.
What Is the AVS Filter — and How Does It Work?
The Address Verification System Filter is a special fraud prevention tool that creates an additional authorization step during the checkout process. Whereas copying a customer's name, credit card and expiration date are all relatively easy, obtaining a user's billing address is a lot more challenging.
With the AVS Filter in place, your payment environment compares the billing address and ZIP code entered during the checkout process with the billing information that the customer's card-issuing bank keeps on file.
The filter allows you to establish matches for partial ZIP codes and/or street addresses. You also have the option of not requiring any match at all — or allowing “unknown” or “unavailable” verification values to go through.
Want to Learn More About Our Fraud Management Services?
The AVS Filter is a powerful tool for reducing fraud — but it can't prevent fraud 100 percent. After all, criminals can technically find customers' billing addresses using a reverse lookup on Google. Yet this extra step takes time, and most thieves prefer targeting the lowest hanging fruit — i.e., e-commerce shopping carts that don't require any additional authentication. The AVS Filter won't eliminate all fraudulent attacks, but it will help make your business far less inviting.
However, when you combine the AVS credit card processing with some of our other fraud management tools, you benefit from much greater round-the-clock protection.
If you'd like to learn more about all of the data security solutions we offer, be sure to read our main Fraud Management Tools page.
Additionally, if you have specific questions about how any of these fraud management services work, don't hesitate to contact our merchant services team today for a free consultation.