In the international online payments arena, merchants, payments service providers, financial institutions and acquirers are conscious that the environment in which they transact, process payments, and transmit data has become extremely complex, with multiple regulatory and data security requirements to meet. Data security requirements – PCI DSS are enforced by the Card Organizations such as Visa Europe. One business area that has developed in the recent years is that of Merchant Agents. These companies provide services that involve processing, storing or transmitting cardholder data (directly or indirectly) and are typically contracted directly by the merchant or retailer, and have no direct relationship with the acquirer or PSP. Therefore, Visa Europe decided to create a tool for the merchant agents to self-register, identify themselves and attest their PCI DSS compliance, dubbed Visa Europe Merchant Agent list.
Visa Europe is creating a public-facing tool allowing merchants and retailers to easily find compliant providers. This move has further allowed for the payment space to be secured by identifying key stakeholders of the payment value chain and to work collaboratively with them in securing payments event further. This list aims to bring transparency and reliability into the market, and facilitate merchants’ due diligence and selection of partners.
Listen to Michael Burtscher, our VP Business Development giving more insights about Visa Europe Merchant Agent list:
Before this list’s inception it was also impossible for merchants to verify whether certain types of providers whose services they intended to retain or were already using, were actually PCI DSS compliant. Today, by choosing an agent from the Visa Europe Merchant Agent List, merchants can feel reassured that their partners are fully compliant with Visa Europe’s standards as indicated on the website. They can easily check their agents’ compliance status by verifying the list; it takes only few minutes to access it and look for an agent. Furthermore, merchants who may not see one of their business partners listed can now ask them to start their registration and attest of their compliance status.
Listen to Ignacio González-Páramo, our Vice President, Global Compliance who gives insight about the registration process of Payvision!
In a nutshell, by getting listed on the Visa Europe merchant agents list, an agent shows it is fully PCI DSS compliant, enabling merchants and retailers to make more informed decisions when selecting and deciding to work with these agents.
So, our advice? Get listed!