A significant percentage of personal transactions that take place today are accomplished either online or over the telephone. Retailers involved in such transactions have to take certain steps to verify that the process is completed in an honest manner, and one way to help guarantee this is through the use of a credit card authorization form.
Credit card processing is usually completed with amazing ease and in a matter of seconds. However, such transactions involve the complex interaction of financial institutions to be accomplished properly. Transactions are finalized with the transfer of funds from the accounts of the card holders to the appropriate merchant accounts, which usually takes only a day or two. The transaction can become complicated if the purchase is done without the physical presence of the customer or the card. An authorization form can in these cases serve as a substitute for the information normally taken directly from the credit card.
The authorization form will be used to verify the account of the card holder. However, the information that is requested on the form may vary among companies. Additionally, some merchants will as part of their credit card processing routine require a copy of the card to be sent to them with the application. The merchant will often request the customer’s name, address, date of birth and driver’s license number, and the form will have to be signed by the person making the purchase. The merchant will also request the security code that normally appears on the back of the credit card. The authorization forms will help confirm the authenticity of the purchase and will also serve as a paper verification of the transaction in the event of a disagreement between the customer and merchant accounts.
Authorization forms are especially important in transactions that involve rushed shipping or in cases where there is a disparity between the billing and shipping addresses. They can also help provide additional protection to merchants when the purchases are particularly costly. Progress has been made in recent years to reduce credit card fraud that occurs during the authorization process, including a requirement that merchants follow established security standards. When fraud does occur, however, the costs usually fall heavily on the merchants. These losses will have to be passed on to the consumers in the amount they pay for goods and services. This reason alone can justify why companies often require credit card authorization forms.