On September 28, Visa, Inc. announced its new dispute process aimed at combatting first-party or “friendly fraud” for card-not-present transactions. The rule change offers merchants more ways to show a disputed charge is valid and authorized. According to the press release, this change has the potential to save small businesses over a billion dollars over the next five years.
“Friendly fraud” refers to customers disputing legitimate transactions, getting the charges reversed, and keeping the merchandise. The press release quotes a small business owner who claims the new process will be a “gamechanger” for her business. “I have been in tough situations where legitimate membership charges have been disputed. If I lose the dispute, not only do I lose the membership fee, I also get a penalty. That can be the difference between making payroll or not. This change will help ensure I have a fair shot during those disputes.”
The press release concludes with Visa ensuring its customers that despite this change it remains steadfast in its commitment to protecting innocent consumers from fraud, including its promise of zero-liability for unauthorized transactions.