Electronic Exchange Systems
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Accepting Debit and EBT Cards

Note: In order to accept debit and/or EBT cards, you must first sign an agreement with EXS and abide by the policies and regulations in the agreement.

Debit Cards

According to the 2001 STAR consumer survey, seventy-five percent of all adult account holders in the U. S. have an ATM/debit card, with nearly 90 percent using them to make purchases at the point of sale. Debit cards are becoming the most popular form of non-cash payment.* There are two types of debit transactions – online and offline.
Online debit (PIN-Secured) transactions require customers to enter a secret PIN at the point-of-sale terminal and the amount of the transaction is debited from the customers’ checking account.

Offline debit transactions (signature-authorized) do not require customers to enter a secret PIN, but instead, sign a receipt authorizing their financial institution to debit their account for the amount of the transaction. This type of transaction can be made with an ATM/debit card bearing a MasterCard or Visa logo on the front.

When you offer debit as a form of payment, you are supplied a number of debit network logos, which are to be displayed at terminal locations and storefront doors or windows, and are to be of a size no smaller than the logo of any of the other card types accepted.

As a debit merchant, you are required to follow certain other procedures, in order to offer debit as a payment option, and they are listed below:

  • The merchant is required to honor all valid debit network cards with terms no less favorable than the terms under which the merchant accepts other card types
  • The merchant may not impose a separate fee as a condition for accepting the debit card
  • The merchant must not set minimum or maximum transaction amount for debit card transactions, or a minimum amount as a condition for accepting the card
  • For PIN-based transactions, the payment terminal shall be equipped with a Personal Identification Number (PIN) entry device for use by the cardholders to enter their PINs
  • The PIN entry device must be at or in close proximity to the Point of Sale device
  • The Point of Sale device must be capable of reading the entire Track II from the cardholder’s card
  • The merchant may not require or request a cardholder signature - the cardholder’s PIN is their electronic signature
  • The merchant may not ask the cardholder to disclose their Personal Identification Number
  • The receipt for debit transactions are to be produced by a receipt printer and be made available to the cardholder at the time the transaction is completed
  • Merchant copies of debit card transaction records are to be retained for a period of 18 months
  • With an offline debit transaction, always compare the signature on the back of the card with that of the receipt
  • Do not provide cash-back during an offline transaction.

EBT Cards

EXS supports Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) processing because we recognize the value to merchants and their customers. Accepting an EBT card at the Point of Sale is similar to accepting other electronic payment card types. EBT transactions are PIN-based, just like debit cards.

An EBT card is a magnetic striped plastic card that electronically delivers Federal/ State funded Food Stamps and Cash Benefits to qualified EBT recipients. An EBT card electronically replaces paper food stamps and unemployment insurance checks, as well as other cash benefits. It eliminates paper processing of food stamps, making it more efficient. It is of similar size and appearance as other types of payment cards, so that the user does not feel awkward.

The EBT card has dual capabilities in a retail environment. An EBT Food Stamp customer is able to purchase eligible food items from grocery and convenience stores. The EBT card can also be used like a debit card for cash benefits. The user can pay for goods and services, as well as receive cash back from participating merchants.





CONTACT US |  EXS is a registered ISO of Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., Walnut Creek, CA