3D Secure is really secure?

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Overview & Some Stats about 3D secure

3D Secure is a protocol designed as a more secure layer for online credit and debit card payments. If you’ve ever made a payment online using a credit or debit card, you would have already used 3D secure. It’s a fraud prevention measure launched in 2001 by Visa (as Verified-by-Visa). Now, recognized and backed by credit and debit card providers Mastercard (as Mastercard Secure Code) and American Express (as American Express SafeKey).

3D secure is one of the prime security measures to take online payments through a payment gateway. It’s an extra step to help protect against card payment fraud. Meanwhile, the growth in online transactions is escalating crucial improvements in worldwide economic conditions. But it is also highlighting the potential payment risks that merchants face during online store shopping.

How 3D Secure works

When you choose to pay online on a website. And once you have entered your payment details to start the process. You get redirected to your debit or credit card provider’s 3D secure web page. It’s here where you have to provide either:

  • The password that you’ll have before setting up with your bank.
  • An OTP (one-time authentication code) that’s sent to your mobile phone.

Sometimes you won’t have to provide any details at all. 

After that, the card provider confirms the details and approves the payment you want to make. You’re sent back to the website with an order confirmation message. Thus, it’s a quick and easy process.

Benefits of 3D Secure

Above all, 3D secure gives an added level of security for both you and your customers. It helps to stop digital thieves from stealing the card details and using them online. It also protects against any unauthorized transaction chargebacks. Once the transaction has passed the 3D secure authentication process, you, the merchant, is no longer liable for the purchase.
In other words, the liability is now with the card payment provider. And he will be responsible for sorting any customer refunds. That is to say, you save time and money with fewer settlement disputes with your customers.

On the other hand, some customers don’t like it. Due to lack of the patience needed to go through the additional steps of contacting their bank to get a password and then actually use it. They find the process annoying and complex. As a result, they lose interest and then abandon the site.

Customers don’t understand the importance of online security for transactions of any kind. In markets where 3D security is not mandatory or usually used, customers consider it a drag to go with any extra step to pay a bill. In other words, Cardholders get unsure of what to do. And end up skipping the additional step in the checkout process. Moreover, tend to seek out a webshop that doesn’t use it.

Merchants have to weigh up the benefits against the real security risks and make a decision to use 3D Secure technology or not. Due to a high-risk business type in some countries, the bank may impose a mandatory use of 3D Secure.

How do I start?

If you’re ready to get started making payments, we can help. We’re all about making it easy. That’s why 3D secure authentication is a part of our online payment gateway solution, along with IP address, AVS, and CV2 checks.
Our gateway can be easily linked with your site, giving you access to a range of UK shopping carts, like Magento, Prestashop, and WooCommerce. In addition, You can check our developer support for our helpful guides on website integration and shopping cart options.
We’ll help you set up a merchant account. That is separate from your business bank account. It’s like a holding area where to check and process your payment funds before sending them to your account for you to access.
Lodge PCI (Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard) compliant.
Although 3D secure authentication helps add another layer of security to online payments, you’ll still need to check that you’re meeting the PCI compliance security measures. And make sure that you’re storing, processing, and accurately transmitting customer data.


If the merchant has the main problem with fraud, then 3D Secure is a good option for preventing chargebacks. However, a regular high-risk merchant account may be a good choice for everyone else. Certainly, it is up to the merchant to weigh the pros and cons. And consider the target market to make the best decision for the business.

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