When the Association of Tour Operators of Quebec (ATOQ) saw the need to tackle the issue of fraud, we were happy to find that the Association of Canadian Travel Agencies (ACTA) shared the same concerns and that we were able to initiate discussions to help identify solutions.
More people, including ATOQ and ACTA, have now come to the table under the umbrella of the Canadian Travel Fraud Prevention Group (CTFPG) which has integrated the existing ACTA fraud committees as part of a larger effort under the IATA Fraud Prevention Project.
It is clear from the discussions at the CTFPG meetings, that all levels of the travel distribution system understand that steps need to be taken to bring fraud under control and solutions are being actively sought to reduce losses.
The credit card companies and card acquirers have made it very clear; they want everyone, both cardholders and merchants, to feel very comfortable using and accepting credit cards for any and all transactions.
For card present transactions, using a chip and pin point of sale (POS) terminal transfers any fraud liability to the card issuer. Unfortunately in the travel business, there are many card not present (CNP) transactions.
For CNP transactions, we are unable to use the 3D Secure option as its basic design relies on consumers dealing directly with the end supplier, which is not the case in the traditional travel agency distribution channel.
Until other solutions are found, we have to start by implementing best practices. Make sure to do the things that can be done as we mentioned in the past publications, such as:
- Checking the origin of the credit card
- Validating the cardholder’s information with the issuing bank
- Checking identity on social media
When you deal with a new client/passenger, remember to protect yourself as much as you can!
While there are no easy remedies, everyone is working together to reduce fraud, which is an important first step to finding long term solutions.