March 30, 2005, 12:00 AM

Visa finally addresses service-quality problems for Verified by Visa

Visa U.S.A. has finally addressed the service quality issues that kept online merchants from signing up for the Verified by Visa authentication program, Visa says.

Visa U.S.A. has finally addressed the service quality issues that kept online merchants from signing up for the Verified by Visa authentication program, says Mike Yakel, vice president for risk product development.

For years, online retailers balked at using Verified by Visa because they feared pop-up windows prompting shoppers to fill in their authentication information would lead to lost sales. “We’ve been working with them so they understand the potential for customer confusion, the potential for lost transactions or abandonment at the point of purchase, which right now is probably the most critical question on merchants’ minds,” Yakel says.

One step Visa has taken is to work with card issuers to make sure the data they present to cardholders is concise and clear, he says. “The cardholders need to understand what is being asked of them so they can complete those transactions, as opposed to being confused and picking up the phone and calling the bank wondering what’s going on,” Yakel says.

More than 4 million cards in the U.S. are activated and have Verified by Visa passwords assigned, Yakel says.

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