For merchants who rely on travel and tourism, the holiday season is one of the busiest periods of the year. This is mostly great news for the travel industry, but the busy sales time means the risk of fraud and loss is likely to increase.
Increasingly, consumers are booking their travel arrangements through a range of different channels. While it’s good for sales, it can create challenges for airlines and travel agents in preventing fraudulent transactions online.
Fraud of this nature, known as Card Not Present or CNP fraud, accounted for 78 per cent ($417.6 million) of all fraud on Australian cards in 2016 (Australian Payments Network). It’s clear this trend is likely to affect the travel industry for some time, particularly at this time of year.
So, why is CNP fraud such an issue for the travel industry? The nature of the industry calls for a high level of investment from both the merchant and the customer, which means travel providers need to be wary when it comes to transaction authorisation and authentication processes. Enacting a number of fraud prevention practices can help to reduce the scale and severity of this issue.
Stay vigilant for potential fraud
During the busy holiday season, it can be easy to become a victim of chargeback fraud. Particularly when you’ve got stressed out customers who want to book last-minute flights or travel packages. Reduce the likelihood of falling victim to payment fraud by reminding yourself of fraud prevention best practices and watching for the following warning signs:
Don’t be pressured to skip the basics!
The common element to these tips is to ensure you don’t let the customer pressure or rush you into approving their purchase. Always follow best business practices. This includes, requesting the necessary travel documents (passport, driver’s license, etc.), and not skipping any steps in the credit card authorisation and authentication process.
The travel industry is not immune to fraud, theft, or the threat of chargebacks. The simplicity of CNP sales and the prevalence of phone bookings make it easy for fraudsters to prey on travel merchants. Take advantage of the solutions out there. You shouldn’t have to fight fraud on your own. Be confident and comfortable with each sale.