To accept the credit cards merchants have to meet certain electronic payment systemís requirements. First
of all, every merchant working with the standard way of making electronic financial transactions (a credit
card payment method) has to open a merchant account at a bank. Then a merchant has to establish a
merchant account payment gateway, turning to one of the payment gateway providers.
The merchants have to settle up an agreement with a bank for the processing credit card payments.
According to this agreement, merchants are obligated to follow the rules established by the credit card
associations, which are the networks of banks operating with specific types of credit cards.
A merchant account can be direct and sponsored. Sponsored accounts mean that a merchant establishes
a merchant account in a bank with the help of the third party typically called an aggregator. One way or
another, a merchant account serves to accumulate the money from the financial transactions with the
Another important procedure for the merchants who wish to process electronic payments is an
establishment of the credit cards processing method.
There are different methods of processing the transactions between a customerís credit card and merchant
account. One of them is a credit card terminal, which is a device enabling the usage of a credit card.
At every credit card terminal it is required to validate the ownership of a card with a PIN-code. One
more credit card processing method is an automated response unit, which allows voice authorization
through a mobile phone. And finally, the third method of credit card processing is used for online financial
transactions. It is called a merchant account payment gateway. A merchant account payment gateway is
equivalent to a terminal at every retailing outlet.
The merchant account payment gateway is a service provided for a merchant by a company separate
from one of the merchant accounts providers (the bank). The main purpose of the merchant account
payment gateway providers is to ensure the link between a customer, a merchant and a bank. Payment
gateway providers secure the payments with the 3d secure protocol, manage the traffic between the
merchant account and the merchant account payment gateway, and manage the currency support of
every merchant account payment gateway.