What is a fraudulent charge?
A charge is fraudulent when the cardholder has not authorised the charge. Most fraudulent charges are made using stolen cards or card numbers, which are then disputed by the real owner of the card. Typically the real owner will contact their bank and their bank will raise a dispute. If the dispute is won, this money will be given back to the cardholder in the form of a chargeback. Collins Pay customers are liable for their own chargebacks.
What does Collins do to try to prevent fraudulent activity?
All payments through Collins Pay are processed by our payment provider Stripe. Stripe has been audited by a PCI-Certified auditor and is certified to PCI Service Provider Level 1. This is the most stringent level of certification available in the payments industry.
We have an effective fraud prevention strategy that uses a number of methods while keeping any customer burden to a minimum:
When a customer makes a payment various checks will be made on the card, including; Card Verification Code Check CVC (also referred to as CVV) & Address Verification based on the postal code.
3D secure is used for payments over £100 - more info here.
3D secure is also used for failed postcode checks as an added protection.
Stripe automatically surfaces payments that their systems indicate to have an elevated risk for us to review.
Any emails sent into Collins that contain a card number will be masked.
If a dispute is made, we assist by providing evidence that this was a genuine booking and a service/goods were provided. We may also ask for evidence from yourself. No chargeback is automatically activated, we will always have the opportunity to dispute a chargeback on behalf of our customers.
What can you do to help prevent and spot fraudulent activity?
While Stripe is best equipped to determine whether or not a transaction is fraudulent, there are many indicators of possible fraudulent activity. While not an exhaustive list, some things you can look out for are;
Does the name on the card match the booking?
Communication with the customer that doesn’t sound quite right
Use of obviously or likely-fake information (such as a fake phone number or a gibberish email address).
Many failed payment attempts by the same customer.
Inconsistencies in customer details across multiple booking, e.g seeing the same email address but a different customer name/payment name.
Unusually large payments.
Last-minute large payments - perhaps unusual to your regular booking patterns
Consider reaching out to the customer making potentially suspicious charges by phone or email to confirm customer and charge details.
A phone number that doesn’t belong to the customer or an email that bounces may indicate suspicious activity; a nonsensical or evasive answer is, similarly, a good indication of potentially fraudulent behaviour. (Remember that even a phone or email response does not guarantee the person responding is the cardholder).
If you suspect a fraudulent payment, it’s worth flagging it with your own management team who can then decide whether you want to supply the service/goods. It’s also worth emailing Collins Success Team on firstname.lastname@example.org with the details and we can check the activity of this user in our Stripe dashboard.