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The Green SheetGreen Sheet

Monday, May 7, 2012

Visa raises 'no signature required' limit

On May 7, 2012, Visa Inc. reported it is doubling its "no signature required" limit to $50 effective Oct. 1, 2012. Visa said its new $50 Visa Easy Payment Service limit will apply to the following U.S. merchant categories: discount stores, grocery stores and super markets.

The Visa Easy Payment Service, launched in July 2010, currently allows merchants in most categories to accept Visa cards without requiring either signature or PIN for transactions up to $25. Visa said its Easy Payment Service offers more customer convenience, cuts down on transaction time and offers other merchant benefits.

The company stated it "may expand this higher transaction limit to additional merchant categories in the near future," adding that approximately 80 percent of its U.S. consumer transactions are for under $50.

"Merchants have asked us to expand the program to purchases up to $50, so that they can more efficiently support consumers' growing preference to use cards instead of cash or checks for everyday purchases," said William Sheedy, Visa Group President, Americas.

Logical move

"This is a logical move from Visa's standpoint," said Ken Musante, President of the California ISO Eureka Payments. "When Visa first initiated the no signature required program, they started with the less risk-prone merchant types and expanded from there. It's likely they will expand the limit in the same way, based on merchant feedback."

Musante said that to make this program effective, cards would have to be mag stripe or have near field communication capability. He stated the low transaction limit together with the cost of manufacturing a counterfeit card makes theft less attractive to thieves who might otherwise see a no signature, no PIN transaction as an easy target.

Musante gave a thumbs-up to the Visa program. "This is an opportunity for salespeople to go out there and talk about change," he said. "It's something else to talk to our merchants about." end of article

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