Online Merchants FAQ's

Ethoca Alerts. Eliminating Chargebacks.


1. About Ethoca?

  • Since 2005, Ethoca has been stopping chargebacks for merchants who process customer-not-present (CNP) transactions.  
  • Ethoca is a communication platform enabling merchants to access card-issuer data through a real-time secure portal or API.
  • Ethoca has exclusive relationships with a global network of banks that issue credit and debit cards to receive pending chargeback notifications and distribute them on transactions post authorization.

2. What are Ethoca Alerts?

  • Ethoca Alerts are notifications for specific transactions that chargebacks will be processed unless a merchant takes action. The merchant needs to issue a refund as soon as possible (objective is within 24 hours) and provide a notification to the issuer through the Ethoca portal that the credit is on its way.

3. What are the benefits of Ethoca Alerts?

  • Providing that a refund is issued in a timely manner and the outcome is submitted, a Chargeback Alert enables a merchant to avoid the chargeback all together – and all the direct and indirect cost associated with getting a chargeback.

4. What data elements are included in an Ethoca Alert?

  • Each Ethoca Alert provides the following information; Credit Card Number, Authorization Date/Time, Amount of the transaction, and the Merchant Descriptor.

5. How are the Ethoca Alerts sent?

  • Via Portal – Ethoca notifies the merchant via email when a new Ethoca Alert is available. The merchant clicks on a link in the email notification and enters their username and password to access the portal.  Once in the portal, any and all Ethoca Alerts can be accessed and actioned by the merchant.
  • Via API – Ethoca has a web service API that can be used to consume and action the Ethoca Alerts automatically.

6. What action does the merchant take when they receive an Ethoca Alert?

  • Simply refund the transaction immediately and record the outcome within the Ethoca portal (or API) as “Stopped” and insert “Refunded on <date/time>” within the comment field.

7. How does Ethoca match Ethoca Alerts to affected merchants?

  • Ethoca uses the merchant descriptors to match Ethoca Alerts to a merchant company. If you open new merchant descriptors, advise Ethoca as soon as possible.  

8. What if you get a Chargeback on a transaction that has been refunded?

  • Ethoca works closely with card issuers to prevent this from occurring. In the event however, you receive a chargeback simply contact Ethoca by emailing our customer service department at customerservice@ethoca.com. Ethoca will work with the card issuers to address the issue and where the credit was submitted in a timely manner. No charges will be applied for the Alert.

9. What if you don’t refund a transaction that you get an Ethoca Alert for?

  • Actioning the Alerts are at the sole discretion of the merchant however not actioning Alerts leads to chargebacks.