Merchant Referral Program


Here is your chance to receive $200 for referring your friends and local businesses to Federated Payments!


Belong to a local merchant association? Have a friend who is a fellow small business owner? Refer your neighbors with confidence knowing that Federated Payments guarantees the lowest rates for all your processing solutions!


Simply fill out the required information on the online referral recruitment form and receive $200 for each merchant who signs up for a new account. Unlimited earning potential - Refer as many businesses as you would like! *



Contact Information




$200 - Merchant #1







$400 - Merchant #2








$600 - Merchant #3








$800 - Merchant #4









* All referred merchants must sign a standard 3-year contract with Federated Payments. Referrals will be paid after 60 days of processing for the referred account. Program based on new Federated Payment customers only. Offer valid only with submission of completed online or printed referral form prior to any Federated contact with referred merchant.

Articles and Whitepapers

  • Determining the validity of a credit card sale
  • Upgrading Phone Lines to Digital?'  Read this First!
  • What to Look for in an ISO Provider:'  Sales Support
  • Credit Card Processing for New Business Owners

Determining Validity of a Credit Card Sale

As a merchant, how do you protect yourself from fraudulent credit card sales? Following these simple steps will certainly help:

Verify address and CVV code - Sounds simple, but this is a step that is often ignored. A CVV Code or CARD VERIFICATION VALUE code is a three or four digit code located on the credit card itself and is a security feature to help verify that the card is on hand for "card not present" transactions. Verifying the address and CVV code provides the confidence that the credit card is in the possession of the cardholder your dealing with and a positive address match should mean that your are shipping the product to an address recognized by the issuing bank.


Be wary of suspicious International Sales - Now I'm not saying that all International Sales are fraudulent; however, it is important to realize the risks. Address verification cannot be performed and it is difficult for your merchant processor to verify the sale in question. Ask yourself does the sale make sense? Why does this individual have to buy the product from you and not someone closer geographically?


Stay abreast of fraud trends/scenarios - More and more, we see merchants being approached for"humanitarian" causes with large purchases needed for orphanages, churches, etc. These are uncommon for the business and are usually sent via e-mail. Merchants are provided with multiple credit cards and are asked to split the sales to get them through. These sales are often invalid. Take the extra step if approached on a Teletypewriter (TTY) line. Unfortunately, another popular method for taking advantage of a merchant is using this device to shield one's identity. Look for the warning signs and take the proper steps to verify the sale.


NEVER, EVER send money to the cardholder - A self-explanatory red flag, there should never be a reason why you would need to refund money via bank or other wire service. If the cardholder even broaches this subject, WALK AWAY!


NEVER hesitate to contact your merchant provider and request a Code 10 - A Code 10 authorization request is to be utilized if a merchant is attempting to process a credit card and suspects fraud or suspicious activity. This request is forwarded to the card issuing bank from the merchant processor so information can be verified before the sale is processed.


Remember, at Federated Canada, we're here to help. Your risk is our risk and we only want you to process valid sales. Call us and we can recommend the best course of action.


Ultimately, the last bit of advice I can provide is this: FOLLOW YOUR INSTINCTS

Unfortunately, I have received emails and calls from hundreds of merchants who have been victimized stating that they "knew it didn't sound right" OR "it was too good to be true" yet still completed the transaction against their better judgment.


No one knows your business and the types of sales you process better then you do. If you are approached for a sale that doesn't feel or sound right, walk away. Seek a different form of payment or at the very least, contact your risk department and have them take steps to offer you an opportunity to make an informed decision.


In the end, ask yourself this question: "Is this sale really worth the hardship of associated fees, chargebacks, and lost product?"

- Rich Placa, Manager Underwriting and Risk Management




Before you upgrade your business phone lines to digital or high-speed, it is critical to contact your merchant service provider first, or you could wind up losing the ability to accept credit cards.


As a business grows, and as technology develops, many business owners will choose to upgrade to a multi-line digital phone system, or, to the increasingly popular Voice-Over-IP-bundle, which combines telephone and internet on a single high-speed line (examples include Optimum Online, Verizon FIOS, Vonage, Comcast, etc.).


These types of data and communication upgrades can do a great deal to enhance business productivity, but if you take the plunge without first considering your Point of Sale device and its capabilities, the effect could be catastrophic.


How can upgrading my business phones or internet service disrupt my credit card processing?

Most of the countertop POS terminals (POS = credit card processing machines) being used at small businesses operate on a conventional analog phone line. These POS terminals often use a dial-up modem, very similar to the ones used in fax machines. If the analog, 'dial-up' phone line is eliminated, your POS terminal loses its ability to connect to your merchant service network. If the terminal cannot connect, sales cannot be approved by the cardholder's bank. The ability to process credit cards would be lost.


What should I do if I accept credit cards, and I need to upgrade my business phone lines?

First, take down the make and model of your current POS terminal. Then call your merchant service provider. The best thing to do is speak to a knowledgeable support representative, and let him or her know what you are considering doing with your phone/internet system. The support rep will help you find the right type of credit card processing device to match your planned system upgrade.


What are my options?

VOIP (Voice Over Internet Protocol) allows for a number of credit card processing options. First, you can upgrade your POS terminal to an IP (high-speed) capable model, so that the terminal uses an internet cable instead of a phone wire. Transaction processing times will drop dramatically.


Another option is a virtual terminal. Virtual terminals are either web or PC based programs that allow your computer to become the POS terminal (i.e. Federated Payments' SafePay). Credit card information can be manually keyed in, submitted via shopping cart, or, if you do face-to-face business, a card reader can be connected to the computer via USB cable for swipe capability.


DSL (Digital Subscriber Line) allows you the same options as above, however, a merchant can also add a DSL filter (available for less than $20) and the analog POS terminal will still function. No new equipment necessary. DSL is often a slower internet connection than VOIP, so it has become a less popular option, but it does allow a business to continue using dial-up technology as needed (like the older and more basic credit card terminals).


Digital phone lines (for voice only - no internet) present a particular challenge where credit card processing is concerned. The number of POS terminal designs that can operate on these phone systems is few or none. In some cases, the POS terminal may function sporadically, working fine one day and not at all the next. If your business requires a digital phone system (commonly used for multi-line rollover systems), it is highly recommended that you leave a separate analog line in place for the POS terminal, or, that you install a high-speed internet connection for an IP terminal or a virtual terminal.


Summing up...

Unfortunately, when the telecom companies are pitching and installing these phone and internet systems at businesses, the issue of POS terminal compatibility is rarely mentioned. Hopefully, the information provided in this article will help you to make an informed decision about how and when to upgrade, so that your ability to accept payments from customers is not disrupted.

-'  Dan Levitt, Manager of Merchant Support



Congratulations! You have made the transition from being a sales rep - the feet on the street so to speak - to opening an office on your own. You are now an Independent Sales Office (ISO). Priority #1 is the evaluation and selection of the company you are going to partner with and represent and how they can help you grow your business.


This is no more evident than in the credit card processing industry. As a leading credit card processor, we see firsthand that the landscape for ISOs is constantly changing. Unfortunately, many ISO's now find themselves in financially difficult times. Why? Because they either a) didn't take the time to research their partner provider; and b) may simply not have known the right questions to ask. After all, picking the right partner is critical to your present and future success.


With this in mind, we are authoring and posting a series of articles on what to look for in an ISO provider in this industry. Following are questions pertaining to the sales, marketing and informational support that should be considered.


Key "Support" Questions when researching ISO provider partners:

Comprehensive On-Demand Agent Portal

One of the most essential things to look for when selecting a provider is the information portal ISOs like yourself can access anytime online that contains all the information you need on a daily basis. Many providers today have nothing more than a simple database with minimal information.


To optimize your sales efforts, you need a partner who offers a comprehensive on-demand agent portal. For example, we provide our ISOs and direct sales reps with access to a proprietary ISO Agent portal where you can:


- Schedule daily appointments

- Track and manage submitted deals from stage 1 to activation

- Review commission breakdown in detail

- Access all training material / documents

- Receive a detailed breakdown of residual report

- Keep track of sales reps performance from month to month


Much more than a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) tool, the ideal agent portal should also be able to:


- Submit merchant applications online to expedite customers through the approval process

- Provide batch reporting on a daily basis

- Flag alerts to customer service issues



When it comes to marketing, first and foremost is the quality and key focus of your prospective partner's website. After all, this is generally the first place prospective customers go to. Is it a) professional and b) most importantly, is it merchant facing? Too many times, these sites can be geared more for ISO recruitment than new business lead generation. And obviously, lead generation is priority #1.

Other questions regarding marketing to consider: Do they provide you with compelling collateral that helps you communicate the benefits of your organization to your customers and prospects? Is this information downloadable in easily printable PDF format on their website to you? Can print and go when you need it? Do they supply pitch books which help you tell the story in a consistent, easy-to-follow layout? And, are the materials they do provide updated in an expeditious manner or are they using statistics from 1995?



Training is another key area for your success. Do they help train YOUR staff to grow and position you for future growth? How often is the training - daily, weekly, monthly, never? Let's face it, having training sessions available on a daily basis, and not just once a month, makes for a most knowledgeable, more successful ISO. In addition, try to uncover the quality of the training and the credentials of the trainer? Do they have a dedicated full professional trainer on staff that has successfully trained thousands of ISOs and sales reps or are sessions conducted by an employee who does that it on his spare time?

If you can do you due diligence, follow the above guidelines regarding sales and marketing support, you should be able to gather enough information to pinpoint the right partner to work with you and help grow your business in these key areas. Please refer to other articles in this series where compensation and other significant areas are explored.

-'  Evan Schweitzer, Chief Financial Officer



Credit Card Processing 101 For New Business Owners

OK, so you just took that huge leap of faith and opened up your own business. Whether you are a retail storefront, restaurant, run a mail order business or are purely internet based, the ability to accept credit cards is critical to the growth and ultimate success of your business.


What's the bottom line? Offer your customers as many payment options as possible to avoid turning away business.

Credit and debit cards alone account for about one third of all personal consumption expenditures in the U.S. - a share that increases every year. And, in times of economic downturn like these, consumers have less cash flow and are putting more purchases on their credit cards.


With that said, following is a list of common question many new business owners have in the area of credit card processing.


What is the first thing I need to do to start accepting credit cards?

You will need a merchant service provider who will set you up with a merchant account for your business. This will give you the ability to accept credit and debit cards in person, online, or over the phone.


How long will it take before I can start accepting credit and debit cards?

With leading processors, you can get you up and running within the same day in many cases.


How much do I have to pay to accept credit cards?

Like anything, rates vary depending on processor you are dealing with and the type of business you operated (i.e. storefront, ecommerce, mail order, etc.) It is important to find a merchant service provider who not only offers guaranteed low rates, but will provide your business with PCI compliant equipment and knowledgeable 24x7x365 customer service and technical support.


How are credit cards charged?

Upon swiping a credit card in a POS terminal, the information is sent from the merchant to your credit card processor who in turn requests the money from the issuing bank, which is deposited directly into your bank account.


What if I own an ecommerce/internet business. Can I still process credit cards?

Depending on the processor you choose to process your credit card transactions, the answer is yes. For instance, at Federated Payments, we have a proprietary ecommerce gateway called SafePay that allows you to process transactions quickly and securely. This is also known in the industry as "card not present" unlike most storefront businesses that physically swipe the customer's credit or debit card.


What does PCI compliant mean for processing equipment?

The Payment Card Industry (PCI) dictates that all merchants, regardless of size or number of transactions that accept, transmit or store any cardholder data need to have terminals and card processing equipment that is PCI compliant to ensure the strictest security guidelines are adhered to.


These are just some of the basics for business owners who want to accept credit card processing to help grow their business and customer base.

-'  Gregory Slote, Director of Marketing

Frequently Asked Questions


Welcome to Federated Payments Canada's Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) Page.

If you don't see the answer you're looking for, just give us a call or drop us an email and we would be happy to help.


Credit Card Processing -- The Basics

Already Accept Credit Cards?

Current Federated Customers


New Merchant FAQs


What is the first thing I need to do to start accepting credit cards?
You will need a merchant account set up for your business. This will give you the ability to accept credit and debit cards in person, online, or over the phone.


How do I apply for a merchant account?
If you would like to sign up for a merchant account, you can call us at 866-912-8770, sign up online, or email us.


What credit cards will I be able to accept?
Federated Payments offers processing services for all major credit cards including Visa, MasterCard, Discover, American Express, Diner's Club, and JCB.


Can I also accept debit cards?
Yes. Federated leads the industry in debit card processing with access to both national and regional networks including Interac.


How long will it take before I can start accepting credit and debit cards?
With Federated, we can get you up and running within the same day in many cases.


When will I receive funds from the transactions which I process?
Funds from your processed transactions should be deposited into your checking account within 2-3 business days.


How are credit cards charged?
Upon swiping a credit card in a POS terminal or entering the required customer information into a virtual terminal, the information is sent from the merchant to Federated Payments. Federated then requests the money from the issuing bank, which is deposited directly into your bank account.


What is the difference between a void and a refund?
A void must be performed prior to the authorization of a transaction. After a transaction is authorized, the transaction cannot be voided by the merchant. A refund must be applied to the customer's account.


What types of processing solutions does Federated offer?
Federated Payments Canada offers a wide range of processing solutions for merchants so you can choose which is right for you. From retail stores to ecommerce and mail order to mobile transactions, Federated has the right solution for your business.


How do I process other payment methods, such as checks?
Federated offers check acceptance solutions which provide you with 100% guaranteed electronic payment transferred directly to your bank. We eliminate the hassle of bounced checks or trips to the bank


What is MOTO processing?
MOTO (mail order/telephone order) processing is also known as a "card not present" MOTO transactions allow customers to make purchases by providing their credit card information without providing a signature over the telephone, Internet, or via mail.


What is a virtual terminal?
A virtual terminal is a processing terminal which merchants may use to process transactions online. Virtual terminals can be accessed from any computer with an Internet connection.


What is PCI compliant?
Payment Card Industry (PCI) compliancy is required for all equipment for most transactions. Federated Payments offers a full line of secure PCI compliant POS equipment certified by Visa/MasterCard and American Express.


How do I program my equipment?
Federated Payments makes getting up and running quick and easy with our free training and set-up for new merchant accounts.


Why do different accounts have different rates?
Different accounts have different rates depending on your business's specific needs and risk factor. For example, some accounts may strictly be store front retail while some businesses accept credit cards over the phone (or "card not present" which presents a slightly higher risk leading to slightly increased rates.


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Already Accept Credit Cards?


Why switch to Federated Payments?
Federated offers the lowest rates available, guaranteed! We assure processing for all major credit and debit cards, allowing you to accept all your customers.


Is my existing POS compatible with Federated Payments?
Federated's processing solutions are compatible with most POS systems. To ensure your POS system is compatible, contact us.


What other services does Federated Payments offer merchants?
Besides credit card processing, Federated Payments also does check processing. We offer cash advances for merchants, check acceptance services, as well as gift cards and customer loyalty programs.


How do you determine my monthly minimum?
Every business's monthly minimum is based on the amount of transactions processed throughout the month.


What if I already have processing equipment, but want to switch to Federated Payments' services?
No problem. Federated Payments supports all major terminals and processing equipment and would be happy to discuss the Federated advantage with you in detail. Contact us to see if you equipment is compatible.


What is SafePay?
SafePay is Federated Payments' proprietary ecommerce gateway that allows merchants to submit transactions online quickly and securely. Using SafePay, you can process sales, authorizations, refunds, and capture existing or voice authorized transactions. The SafePay Gateway can be accessed from any computer Internet access at any time, providing a quick and convenient way for merchants to process transactions.


Do you offer merchant accounts to businesses located outside of the United States?
Yes, operating under the name MSI Canada, Federated is the leading provider of merchant services in Canada.


Are there any businesses that you do not allow to apply?
Yes. To hold ourselves to the highest level of integrity, Federated does not provide services for certain types of businesses. Click Here to view full list


What kind of support does Federated offer in case something goes wrong?
At Federated, our world-class customer service and technical support is available 24/7/365 days a year. With Federated, you will always get a support expert on the phone quickly who is located in either our New York or Canadian offices.


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Current Federated Customers


How do I change my address and/or telephone number?
A simple request in writing can be faxed to the attention of our Customer Service Department at (631) 390-1247. Upon receipt, the change will be completed within two (2) business days.


How do I change the business checking account information that is linked to my FEDERATED merchant account?
It is extremely important to notify FEDERATED immediately upon any change to the checking account that is linked to your FEDERATED merchant account. Failure to notify FEDERATED may result in the delayed deposit of funds to your checking account or funding to the wrong checking account. A void check for the new account must be faxed to our Customer Service Department at (866) 545-1436. In the event of a starter check, a bank letter is also required. The change will be completed within two (2) business days. The original checking account should be left open with funds available during the transition to the new checking account.


How do I change my business name and/or the description of my business appearing on my customers' billing statements?
If there is a change in the business name and/or DBA, the Articles of Incorporation must be provided to FEDERATED. To make this change to your merchant account, please fax a written request to our Customer Service Department at (631) 390-1247.


How do I increase my processing limits?
This request must be submitted in writing with the new ticket amount and average monthly volume amount. To make this change to your merchant account, please fax the written request to our Customer Service Department at (866) 545-1436. Please include your DBA name and merchant number in your request.


>How do I change the ownership information if I've recently acquired or sold the business?
The new owner must complete a new Merchant Application and Agreement. Contact your Sales Representative for assistance, or you may contact FEDERATED directly at (800) 217-8711


How do I know what has been deposited into and/or deducted from my checking account by FEDERATED?
This information is available in several formats. A monthly processing statement is mailed the first week of each month for the preceding month's activity. Checking your bank statement is also an option. Deposits and withdrawals will be listed on your bank statement as "Bankcard Processing". A third option is to call our Customer Service Department at (800) 217-8711.


How frequently are funds deposited into my business checking account?
Activity on your merchant account is processed on a daily basis and is reported according to the processing date. The transfer of funds to or from your checking account takes place through the Automated Clearing House (ACH). Depending on your merchant account type, the transfer may vary from 2 to 5 business days. Weekends and Federal holidays are not considered as business days.


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Prohibited Business Types*

  • Acai or Health Related Teas
  • Adult Material, Pornography
  • Anti-Aging Products
  • Airlines, Air Carriers
  • Bankruptcy Attorney
  • Business Opportunity
  • Buying/Shopping Club
  • Cash for Gold Non Face to Face
  • Charters, Tours
  • Check Cashing Services
  • Collection Agencies
  • Colon Cleansers and other Detox Products
  • Computer Bulletin Boards
  • Continuity Business – Non Face to Face
  • Coupon/Gift Certificates
  • Credit Repair/ Credit Insurance
  • Companion Services
  • Cruise Lines
  • Custom Clothing Non Face to Face
  • Direct Inbound Teleservices (5967)
  • Direct Marketing Travel (5962)
  • Direct Outbound Telemarketing (5966)
  • Discount Medical and/or Drug Plans
  • Downloading of Software Sales (Movies/Music)
  • Escort Services
  • Finance/Loan Services
  • Firearms – Non Face to Face Transactions
  • Furniture Sales Non Face to Face
  • Gaming/Betting Activities (7955)
  • Gentlemen Clubs
  • Glucose Strips
  • Golf Clubs (MO/TO) – Gimmicky Products
  • Hair Restoration Services
  • Horoscope & Fortune Tellers
  • Infomercials
  • Internet Based Work from Home Plans
  • International Freight Forwarding Services
  • Investment Opportunities
  • Loan Modification/Reduction Services
  • Massage Parlors, Non-Licensed
  • Mattress Sales Non Face to Face
  • Medical Marijuana
  • Mortgage Modification/Reduction Services
  • Mortgage Services (Security Sales)
  • Multi-Level Marketing
  • Non Face to Face Transactions with Products only being provided through Drop Shipping
  • Non Face to Face Computer Repair/PC Support Transactions
  • On-line Malls/Aggregators, On-line Auctions
  • Pay Per Click Web Merchants “Parked Websites”
  • Pet Sales Non Face to Face
  • Pharmacies – Non Face to Face
  • Pin Based / Rechargeable Calling Cards
  • Products with Unreasonable Guarantees/Expectations
  • Real Estate/Property Sales
  • Royalty Payments / Fees
  • Self Help Books
  • Services offering Government Monetary Grants and other “Business Opportunity” Schemes
  • Sports Forecasting
  • Subscriptions(yearly)
  • Teeth Whitening Products
  • Telephony Services (VOIP)
  • Third Party Billing
  • Ticket Broker
  • Time Share Sales/Rentals
  • Tobacco, Alcohol, Firearms, or any Age Sensitive Products that are non face to face transactions
  • Traffic Ticket Repair Services
  • Travel Agencies, Travel Clubs
  • Used Vehicles                        
  • Vitamin Business/Neutraceuticals Non Face to Face
  • Water Purifiers
  • Weight Loss Centers
  • Wholesale Clubs
  • Wire Transfer Company



*Federated Payments reserves the right to modify and/or change the prohibited business list without notice and at its sole discretion.

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Merchant Information




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From new business owners to existing Federated Canada customers, our FAQ section has answers to all commonly asked questions.


Merchant Referral Program

Here is your chance to receive $200 for EACH local business owner you know that your refer to Federated Payments!  Click on above link for details.

Business Articles

Check out our library of articles and whitepapers designed to help our merchant customers and ISO partners uncover information important to their business.


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