Merchant Blog

Cryptocurrency vs. Traditional Money

August 16, 2017 7:59 am Published by

As money continues to become more digital, terms like cryptocurrency, digital currency, and Bitcoin have become major buzz words in the payments world. We recently took a look at what cryptocurrency is and how it works, and now we’re here to discuss how it differs from traditional payment forms including cash and credit and debit cards.

What Is Cryptocurrency?

Before we get into the benefits of cryptocurrency over traditional money, lets quickly review what it is. Cryptocurrency, also called digital currency, is a digital coin you can send online. Digital currency represents value that is not issued by a central bank or government, but is accepted by people and merchants as a means of payment for goods or services.

There are currently more than 900 cryptocurrencies available over the internet, and new cryptocurrency can be created any time.  Bitcoin, Ripple, Etherium, Litecoin, Peercoin, and Namecoin are some of today’s bigger players that you may have heard of.

Cryptocurrency vs. Traditional Money

What are the differences between cryptocurrency and traditional money? Let’s take a look at the many benefits of digital currency.

  • Digital currency affords users complete anonymity. Every time you swipe your credit or debit card, your personal information is attached, and businesses, banks and governments can use this data to track your activities. Cryptocurrency transactions carry no personal information (unless you add it yourself). This privacy also dramatically decreases the chances of identity theft.
  • Constant access to your accounts. Traditional accounts can be garnished or frozen, but since digital currency exists outside the regulations and laws that allow this to happen, it’s very rare to be unable to access your coins.
  • No fraud! Individual cryptocurrencies are digital and cannot be counterfeited or reversed arbitrarily by the sender, as with credit card charge-backs
  • Lower fees. Traditional banks charge fees to process transactions. With digital currency being exchanged over the internet, there are usually little or no transaction fees.
  • Access to everyone. There are around 2.2 billion people with access to the Internet or smartphones who don’t have access to a traditional exchange. For these people, the cryptocurrency is perfect. With this said, one in three Kenyans now own a bitcoin wallet, which is huge!

Aliant: Now Offering BitPay

Here at Aliant, we strive to provide the latest payments technology to help merchants run their businesses effectively. We’re proud to now offer BitPay, an automated payment processing system for the bitcoin currency. To learn more, contact us or call 888-638-6103.

Cryptocurrency vs. Traditional Money


What Are the Risks of Card Not Present Transactions?

August 15, 2017 8:19 am Published by

As e-commerce continues to grow year-over-year, so does the amount of card not present (CNP) transactions. While consumers often prefer these types of transactions due to the ease of making purchases from their computer or mobile device, credit card fraud runs rampant in CNP transactions and can create huge headaches for merchants.

Below we explain how CNP transactions work, as well as the risks they present to merchants.

What Are Card Not Present Transactions?

Just as the name suggests, card not present transactions are purchases that occur without the buyer and seller being in the same place. CNP transactions typically occur when a consumer shops online, but they can also occur during a transaction via telephone or mail order.

Online shopping continues to increase in popularity year-over-year, as consumers appreciate the convenience of CNP transactions and shopping from their couches. According to recent data from BigCommerce, 51% of Americans prefer to shop online, and 80% have made an online purchase in the past month.

The Risks of Card Not Present Transactions

The risk for merchants is a lot higher for card-not-present merchants than it is for card-present merchants. When a transaction is made with the buyer and merchant in the same place, the merchant is able to verify the transaction personally. In an effort to protect themselves, the merchant can compare the credit card to a driver’s license or ID card, look at the back of the card for a signature, or require a PIN to be entered.

Merchants processing card not present transactions do not have the same opportunity to verify the purchase. This makes them more susceptible to two types of fraud:

Credit card fraud is when a criminal uses a stolen credit card or card number to make purchases that the cardholder did not authorize.

Chargeback fraud occurs when a buyer orders and receives something from a merchant, but tells their bank that they either did not authorize the charge or did not receive the product.

Protect Your Business from Card Not Present Fraud

Card not present fraud remains a persistent threat to merchants, but there are steps they can take to protect themselves. Working with a reputable credit card processor, investing in the right security solutions, and following best practices to detect and reduce fraud can help merchants protect their businesses.

Aliant is proud to be a highly regarded payment processor that specializes in e-commerce processing. With over 14 years of experience in the payment processing industry, our friendly and knowledgeable integration specialists are equipped with all the tools to quickly identify, address and resolve issues during the integration process. To learn more, or to get started, contact us or call 888.638.6103.

 

Risks of Card Not Present Transactions


What are Card Not Present Transactions?

August 4, 2017 8:20 am Published by

Examples of card present transactions

When a consumer walks into a business and pays for a product or service using a credit or debit card, this is considered a card present transaction. These face-to-face transactions take place everyday at businesses like restaurants, department stores, supermarkets, movies theaters and more.

Examples of card not present transactions

As the name suggests, card not present (CNP) transactions occur without the buyer and seller being in the same place. Here are the five most common instances where card not present transactions happen:

1. Online transactions. Did you know that according to BigCommerce, 80% of Americans have made an online purchase in the past month alone.

2. Telephone purchases. Bills are still often paid over the phone, and products and services are purchased.

3. Mail orders. This is a struggling industry, but mail order transactions do still happen.

4. Card on file payments. These transactions typically occur when a customer has provided a continuous authorization on a debit or credit card. Some examples include gym memberships, wine clubs, and subscriptions for goods or services.

5. Cloud wallet payments. This is a newer and increasingly popular option for making everyday purchases using mobile phone apps. What’s interesting about cloud wallet payments is that the customer and merchant may be in the same physical location during the transaction, but the card doesn’t need to be.

The Future of CNP Tranactions

Online shopping continues to increase in popularity, as consumers appreciate the convenience it provides. According to recent data from BigCommerce, 96% of Americans have made an online purchase in their life, with 67% of Millennials and 56% of Generation Xers preferring to shop on online rather than in-store.

With e-commerce growing 23% year-over-year, what’s interesting (and a bit startling) is that 46% of American small businesses still do not have a website. With consumers’ increasing desire for instant access, fast turnaround, and convenience, it is estimated that online shopping will be the norm in the next few years. Businesses that do not keep up, and establish an online presence will likely be left behind.

Aliant: An E-Commerce Payment Processor

Aliant is proud to be a highly regarded payment processor that specializes in e-commerce processing. With over 14 years of experience in the payments industry, our friendly and knowledgeable integration specialists are equipped with all the tools to quickly identify, address and resolve issues during the integration process. To learn more, or to get started, contact us or call 888.638.6103.

 


Payment Processing News Merchants Need to Know About

August 2, 2017 7:51 pm Published by

Happy Monday! As we gear up for another awesome week of processing payments for our favorite merchants, we’re here to share the latest industry news. Here’s some of the top stories you need to know about in the world of credit card processing and merchant services! Enjoy!

Cosmetics Giant Lush Accepts Bitcoin

Anti-animal cruelty and vegan cosmetic and skincare giant Lush is one of the first retail brands to embrace new payments technology by accepting Bitcoin as a form of payment on its online store. Lush joins companies like Microsoft, Expedia and Steam in this uptick of Bitcoin. Read the full article here.

Samsung Could Open Samsung Pay To Rival Smartphones

It’s rumored that Samsung Electronics may be opening up its Samsung Pay digital payment service to non-Samsung smartphones. If this ends up being true, it would mark a stark departure from Samsung’s strategy of keeping its digital payment platform housed in its own devices. Read the full article here.

You can now use PayPal through Skype’s mobile app

The PayPal partnerships keep coming, with the company announcing a new deal with Skype that will allow users in 22 countries worldwide to send money to other Skype users through an updated version of the Skype mobile app. Read the full article here.

Study: Nearly 6 in 10 large corporations considering blockchain deployment

Nearly six in 10 (57 percent) large corporations are either actively considering, or are in the process of deploying, blockchain technology, according to a new study by Juniper Research. Read the full article here.

Cryptocurrency Explained- What It Is, and How It Works

As many things in our world transition to becoming digital, so is our money. Terms like cryptocurrency, Bitcoin, and Etherium have become major buzz words in the payments world, and they are the next evolution of money. Learn what cryptocurrency is, how it works, and how to get started with it. Read the full article here.

 

Payment Processing News Merchants Need to Know About


Cryptocurrency Explained- What It Is, and How It Works

August 1, 2017 8:11 am Published by

As many things in our world transition to becoming digital, so is our money. Terms like cryptocurrency, Bitcoin, and Etherium have become major buzz words in the payments world, and they are the next evolution of money. Below we explain what cryptocurrency is, how it works, and how to get started with it.

What is Cryptocurrency?

Cryptocurrency, also called digital currency, is a digital coin you can send through the internet. Digital currency represents value that is not issued by a central bank or government, but is accepted by people and merchants as a means of payment for goods or services.

There are currently more than 900 cryptocurrencies available over the internet, and new cryptocurrency can be created any time.  Some of the bigger digital currency players you may have heard of include Bitcoin, Ripple, Etherium, Litecoin, Peercoin, and Namecoin.

How Cryptocurrency Works

Cryptocurrencies can be bought at online providers using a credit card or debit card. Once you own digital currency, they behave like physical gold coins. They possess value and trade just like if they were nuggets of gold in your pocket.

Digital currency is traded from one personal “wallet” to another. A wallet is a small personal database stored on your smartphone, computer, or in the cloud.

Digital currency can be used to purchase goods and services online, or you can hold on to them in hopes that their value increases over time. Some companies that currently accept Bitcoin as a form of payment include, but are not limited to, WordPress, Overstock.com, Microsoft, Zynga, Expedia, Tigerdirect, OkCupid, Shopify, and many more.

How To Buy Digital Currency

Digital currency can be purchased online through exchanges, or businesses that specialize in cryptocurrencies. The most accessible and well-known cryptocurrency exchange is Coinbase, though they only work with Bitcoin, Litecoin, and Ethereum as of right now.

Exchanges also offer helpful services like wallets, which you will need in order to store your currency. While these exchanges often take a fee in exchange for use of their services, the fee is typically small.

Aliant: Now Offering BitPay

Here at Aliant, we strive to provide the latest payments technology to help merchants run their businesses effectively. We’re proud to now offer BitPay, an automated payment processing system for the bitcoin currency. To learn more, contact us or call 888-638-6103.

Have you invested in digital currency yet? Tell us which one in a comment! 


Visa is Asking Restaurants to Stop Accepting Cash

July 13, 2017 3:18 pm Published by

Visa Inc. has unveiled an interesting proposal for restaurants and food vendors across the U.S. The credit card giant is willing to give as many as 50 food-related merchants $10,000 each to upgrade their systems, especially to accept contactless mobile payments. The catch: they must agree to no longer accept cash.

It’s no secret that cash has been Visa’s longtime competitor, but we’ve never seen them wage war quite like this before.

“We’re focused on putting cash out of business,” Visa’s new CEO, Al Kelly, told investors in June. Globally, payments by cash and check are actually increasing. Americans still use cash in 32% of transactions, and Visa is on a mission to change that.

Pros & Cons Of Going Cashless

According to one New York City restaurant, they save 23 hours each week worth of work by going cashless. However, the downside to this is having to pay transaction fees on all of the revenue it takes in.

The National Retail Federation is not in favor of going cashless, pointing out that fees take an average 2% bite off the top of business. This percentage is even higher for smaller merchants. They also noted that expenses related to accepting cash, including the risk of robbery and theft, are still lower than paying credit card fees.

Visa will pick the participating businesses for their cashless program from an application process that begins in August, and from there it will be interesting to see how customers respond to it.

Since we recently began offering Aliant merchants Bitpay, we’re also going to throw this out there: one way that businesses can avoid both interchange fees and cash would be to accept blockchain currencies like Bitcoin! For more information on Bitpay, contact us today!



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