Information on Merchant Accounts,
Ecommerce and Credit Card Processing

July 27th, 2007 by Jamie Estep

Prohibited Merchant Accounts

Filed in: Merchant Accounts |

These are the business types which are prohibited with most US processors. Some processors may allow a few of these assuming they have business history, but generally these businesses won’t be able to process with a US provider.

  • All Sexually Oriented or Pornographic merchants including:
    • Adult Book Stores
    • Adult Telephone Conversations or video text
    • Companion/Escort Services/Dating Services
    • Massage Parlors
    • Topless bars/clubs
    • Modeling agencies
    • Misc entertainment (not elsewhere classified)
  • Aggregators (third party payment processors)
  • Audio/video text
  • Airlines
  • Cruise Lines
  • Any Illegal products/services or any service or product providing peripheral support of illegal activities
  • Auction Houses
  • Bail Bondsmen
  • Cellular Phone/Beepers (Services, not equipment)
  • Chain Letters
  • Charities (other than well known)
  • Check Cashing
  • Collection agencies or firms involved in recovering/collection past due receivables
  • Credit Repair
  • Credit Card Protection or Identity Theft Services
  • Currency Exchanges
  • Drug Paraphernalia
  • Extended Warranty Companies
  • Flea Markets (with no lease and phone availability) (Virtual terminal/Wireless consider High Risk)
  • Fortune Tellers
  • Merchants offering free gifts, prizes, sweepstakes or contests as an inducement to purchase a product/service
  • Get Rich Quick Schemes
  • Health Membership Clubs (Extended Memberships)
  • Import/Export (Non Mag Stripe or MO/TO)
  • Investment Programs/ Opportunities
  • Non face-to-face pharmacy sales (non-institutional)
  • Non face-to- face tobacco/cigarette sales
  • Lotteries, Gambling, internet Gambling, contests or sweepstakes
  • Sports forecasting or odds making
  • Mortgage Reduction Services
  • Taxi/Limousines (singletons) Virtual terminal/Wireless consider High Risk)
  • Pseudo-pharmaceuticals (anti-aging, sex nutrients, etc.)
  • Prepaid Cards/quasi cash
  • Real Estate Seminars
  • Shippers/forwarding Brokers
  • Timeshare
  • Travel Agents/Tour Operators/Travel Clubs
  • Merchants engaged in Door to Door Sales
  • Pyramid or multi-level marketing distribution
  • Third party order fulfillment
  • Merchants engaged in Outbound Telemarketing
  • Infomercial merchants or other inbound telemarketers engaged in upsell
  • Merchants offering rebates or special incentives

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