Past Articles

  • Securing data in transit: A guide to PCI-validated P2PE

    Oct 2, 2023

    As data breaches and cyberattacks grow more common, businesses need robust security measures to protect sensitive customer payment data. This is especially evident in the retail industry, where an increasing number of acceptance endpoints amplifies merchants’ vulnerability to data compromises and breaches.

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  • MAG Continues its Global Expansion with the 2023 APAC Summit, 1-2 November

    Sep 28, 2023

    Following the success in 2022 of our first in-person event in Singapore, we are thrilled to share MAG is hosting its second annual APAC Summit, 1-2 November 2023 at the Westin Singapore.

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  • Five x Fifteen

    Sep 8, 2023

    Maureen Elworthy reflects on 15 years of advocating and collaborating on behalf of merchants, consumers, and payment providers. First with AHOLD USA and now with JPMorgan Chase, Maureen has a uniquely valuable perspective into the ways the MAG has empowered merchants to create, grow, and protect enduring customer relationships over the past decade and a half. Covering interchange, alternative payments, the Durbin Amendment, transaction security, and more, here are five questions for a MAG supporter!

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  • Don’t miss the 2023 Annual Conference and Tech Forum!

    Aug 25, 2023

    We are excited to welcome you to our upcoming MAG Annual Conference and Tech Forum in Atlanta, September 10-13, where we will be commemorating MAG's 15-year anniversary. The MAG works hard to create a conference that offers many networking events, advanced payments discussions, and a wide variety of education, making the Annual Conference an amazing event to attend.

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  • Coming Soon – Exploring Payments Technology

    Aug 25, 2023

    The MAG is proud to announce the launch of our seventh eLearning course, Exploring Payments Technology. We began our digital learning journey in early 2021, with Merchant Payments 101 – which to date has over 500 graduates, with nearly 22,000 user visits and 1,200 individuals who have started the course.

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  • Tokenization in 2023: Where is the Payments System Going

    Jul 31, 2023

    A lot has been written about tokenization since the first big data breach in 2013. The focus today is to talk about the challenges with tokens and how merchants can affect change.

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  • Expanding the Merchants’ Voice

    Jul 25, 2023

    Have you ever wondered how decisions are made regarding payments? Or how you can have a voice in the implementation of payments? At the MAG, we are thinking about these things daily. After all, the MAG’s mission is ensuring merchants have a voice in the payments ecosystem.

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  • Credit Card Competition Act Reintroduced

    Jul 21, 2023

    The Credit Card Competition Act (CCCA) was reintroduced with bicameral and bipartisan support on June 7, 2023. Structured very similarly to last year’s duo of bills, the CCCA outlines a mandate that card issuers must enable two non-competing networks on their credit cards, with the intent of creating more competition in the card issuing and card network space.

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  • Finding B2B Buyers Hidden in Your B2C Checkout

    Jun 30, 2023

    B2B sales look a lot like B2C sales these days. For retailers that typically focus on consumers, it is likely your company already has business buyers spending with you but you may not know who they are...yet.

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  • You Are Invited! MAG’s 15th Annual Conference

    Jun 29, 2023

    The MAG’s 2023 Annual Conference and Tech Forum is quickly approaching, taking place September 10–13 at the Hyatt Regency Atlanta. It will be here before you know it!

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  • Learn More About Network Tokenization and PAR

    Jun 15, 2023

    Network tokenization is an evolution in payments card data protection and transactional services for remote commerce and wallet-based transactions. Network tokenization is an industry standard published by EMVCo and is open to anyone in the payments ecosystem.

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  • European Payments: And Now, for Something Completely Different!

    Jun 9, 2023

    In comparison to other regions, Europe is quite uniquely organised. The European Union and the wider European Economic Area are complex due to the multi-cultural mix of member states. The law-making process is lengthy and somewhat convoluted, with the European Commission taking most of the initiative. During the entire process, external interest groups are invited to submit their views but may also send in unsolicited positions, hoping to influence lawmaking to suit their constituencies.

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  • An Inside Look at the Last 15 Years With the MAG: A Conversation with Founding Board Member Chris Priebe

    Jun 6, 2023

    Fifteen years ago, Chris Priebe, Senior Director – Treasury Payments and Risk, Southwest Airlines and Vice Chair, MAG Board of Directors, felt fortunate enough to be in the room at Southwest Airlines Headquarters with a few really ambitious merchants who were gearing up for an exciting endeavor. The goal of this endeavor was to make a merchant-led educational and advocacy group, now known as the Merchant Advisory Group (MAG), that would bring merchants together for two semi-annual meetings.

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  • To surcharge or not to surcharge? Making sense of payment method incentive programs.

    May 24, 2023

    Merchants who want to incentivize customers to use a lower-cost payment method can surcharge credit card transactions, perhaps charge a convenience fee, or even offer a cash discount. But merchants beware: a complex matrix of rules stands between you and the decision. As you begin to consider surcharging, it is important to consider the tangled web of requirements to be evaluated from multiple sources including case law, legislation, court actions, state/city laws, card brand rules, and even your own merchant agreements.

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  • Membership News: Spring has Sprung…and so has MAG Growth!

    May 18, 2023

    We are excited to share that in addition to our continued MAG member and sponsor growth, our internal team has grown as well. With our focus on growing the MAG, we are targeting several industry verticals for membership growth, including eCommerce, healthcare, insurance, education, hospitality, gaming, fitness, and, as always, the Retail Top 100.

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  • Get Involved in Faster Payments

    May 3, 2023

    There is a lot of attention on Faster Payments these days, but there is also a lot of confusion. The United States is in a unique position where, come summer of 2023, there will be two real-time payments networks: The Clearing House (TCH), owned by the banks, and FedNow that the Fed will launch this summer. This competitive landscape highlights the endorsement of real-time payments and will drive innovation.

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  • Debit Routing: Lowering Your Cost of Payments Acceptance Through Taking Control

    May 1, 2023

    Over ten years ago, Congress passed legislation aimed at making debit acceptance more competitive. The law, known as Regulation II or the Durbin Amendment, locked in merchants’ right to choose between two unaffiliated networks in the routing of a PIN debit transaction.

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  • The 118th Congress Convenes and Regulatory Activity Kicks Off the New Year

    Mar 30, 2023

    With such an exciting 2022 for payments policy, it is important to look ahead at what 2023 will bring. In 2023, we will see the enforcement date of the Federal Reserve Board’s (Fed) Regulation II Debit Routing Clarification come into effect on July 1, renewed efforts on the Credit Card Competition Act (CCCA), and regulatory agencies such as the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) will remain hard at work. Below is an update as to what is going on in DC.

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  • Leverage MAG Resources to Expand Your Growth in the Payments Ecosystem

    Mar 29, 2023

    There are many ways to utilize the MAG’s member benefits and available resources to help move your business forward.

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  • A Closer Look at ISO 20022

    Mar 22, 2023

    For most of the last 40 years, the payments industry has primarily relied on the ISO 8583 standard for processing payment transactions. More recently another standard, ISO 20022, has begun making appearances in certain payment applications in the U.S. ISO 20022 is a global standard for exchanging electronic financial messages of all sorts. While it may seem to many that 20022 is a new standard, it has actually been around for almost two decades being first published by ISO in 2004 and has been adopted in a number of countries around the globe.

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The Merchant Advisory Group

Driving positive change and innovation in the payments industry that serves the merchants interest through collaboration, education, and advocacy.