Monday, October 12, 2009

In-flight Commerce Terminals / Level 4 Requirements

The following requirements apply to In-flight Commerce Terminals / Level 4.
  1. Acquirer / Service Provider requirements and transaction identification specifications:
    • Acquiring banks must ensure timely delivery and installation of the IFC Blocked Gaming File to gaming service providers. IFC Blocked Gaming File access is required before every gaming transaction.
    • The acquiring bank must identify in-flight commerce services or merchandise with the most appropriate merchant category code (MCC) in the authorization message and merchant business code (MCC) in First Presentment / 1240 messages. If an airline also acts as the service provider, the acquiring bank may not use an airline MCC but must assign the proper MCC for each type of IFC transaction. The following list of IFC transaction types must be identified with the designated MCC.

      IFC Transaction Type


      Catalog card acceptor


      Duty-free store




      Miscellaneous services


      Video game


    • Transactions must be consolidated by MCC, per flight, for each MasterCard cardholder account. "Flight" is defined as one or more segments of a continuous air flight with the same flight number.
    • The acquiring bank must identify the transaction with the most appropriate transaction category code (TCC) in the authorization request message.

      IF the IFC transaction is for…

      THEN the acquirer must use TCC…


      U for Unique Transaction.

      Anything other than gaming

      R for Retail Purchase

    • The Merchant Name / Location (DE 43) must include the service provider's name and flight identification. The flight identification must be a recognizable identification of the airline (not necessarily the airline alphabetic International Air Transport Association [IATA] indicator).
    • The city field description should contain the following:


      The city field description…

      Mailed purchases and gaming transactions

      Must include the service provider’s customer service telephone number. It is not required to be a toll-free number.

      All IFC transactions other than mailed purchases and gaming

      Optionally may be a customer service telephone number.

    • For all IFC transactions except IFC mailed purchase transactions, the transaction date is defined as the date that the flight departs from the originating city. The transaction date for mailed purchases is defined as the shipment date unless otherwise disclosed to the cardholder.
    • The acquiring bank must ensure that the service provider provides full disclosure to the cardholder via the video monitor screen prior to the initiation of any IFC transactions, as detailed below. The screen must prompt the cardholder to acknowledge these disclosure terms before initiating transaction. The disclosure must include the following:
      • Full identification of the service provider and provision for recourse in terms of cardholder complaints or questions.
      • Notification that transactions will be billed upon the card issuer's approval of the authorization request.
      • For mailed purchases only, any additional shipping or handling charges.
      • Policy on refunds or returns.
      • Provision for a paper receipt.

      • For IFC gaming transactions, service providers must additionally disclose the following:

      • Maximum winnings ($3,500) and maximum losses ($350).
      • Notification that total net transaction amount (whether a net win or loss) will be applied against the cardholder's account
      • Notification that cardholder must be at least 18 years of age to play.
      • Notification that some card issuers may not allow gaming.
    • The acquiring bank must ensure that the service provider is capable of providing an itemized receipt to the cardholder for all IFC transactions and that, at the cardholder's option, the service provider can effect this offer in one of three ways:
      • Printing a receipt at the passenger's seat.
      • Printing a receipt from a centralized printer on the plane.
      • Mailing a receipt to the cardholder.

      • The mailed receipt offer is to be made available via the video monitor and must require the cardholder to input his or her name and address. For IFC gaming transactions the service provider must provide a receipt to the cardholder by one of the first two methods, described above.

        The receipt must contain the following elements:

      • Identification of the passenger's flight, seat number, and date of departure.
      • Itemized transaction detail.
      • Gaming transaction specified as a net win or net loss.
      • The cardholder's account number truncated on the receipt. Acquirers must ensure that transaction receipts provided to cardholders reflect a minimum of four and a maximum of 12 digits of the cardholder account number. The remaining digits are to be truncated, or rendered indeterminable. In all cases, at least four digits must be truncated. It is recommended that the receipt reflect only the last four digits of the primary account number, and that all preceding digits are truncated. It is also recommended that truncated digits are replaced with fill characters such as "X", "*", or "#" and not with blank spaces or numeric characters.
    • For IFC terminals, the assurance and demonstration of security of the transmission of authorization and clearing data between the on-board client server and the acquiring bank and the physical controls over hardware and operating software. Encryption of transmitted data is advised.
  2. Transaction requirements.
    • No maximum transaction amount applies to any IFC transaction, with the exception of IFC gaming transactions.
    • An IFC terminal that also is a hybrid terminal is prohibited from performing fallback procedures from chip to magnetic stripe.
  3. Additional requirements for IFC gaming transactions.
    • Net gaming losses cannot exceed $350 per flight per cardholder account. Net payouts to cardholders for gaming wins cannot exceed $3,500 per flight per cardholder account. This must be monitored throughout the flight by the service provider to ensure compliance.
    • A gaming win transaction will result in posting of net winnings (credit) to the cardholder's account. Under no circumstance may winnings be paid in cash or other form of payment.
    • Before participating in IFC gaming activity, the acquiring bank must take all reasonable and necessary steps to ensure that all IFC gaming activity will be effected in full compliance with all applicable laws and regulations.
  4. Cardholder account number verification - in-flight verification prior to transaction initiation.
    • The acquirer must ensure that the service provider conducts a Mod-10 check digit routine to verify card authenticity.
    • The acquirer must ensure that the service provider confirms that the card account number is a valid one.
    • For IFC gaming transactions, the acquirer must ensure that the cardholder's account number is checked against the IFC Blocked Gaming File. Cardholders whose account numbers are listed on the IFC Blocked Gaming File must be prohibited from initiating any IFC gaming transaction.
  5. Authorization requirements for all IFC transactions.
    • The Authorization Request / 0100 message must include the cardholder-activated terminal level 4 indicator.
    • The acquirer must read and transmit full, unaltered card-read data. An IFC authorization request may not contain a key-entered account number or expiration date.
    • Transactions are either authorized air-to-ground during the transaction or authorized in a delayed batch. All are authorized on a zero floor limit basis.
    • The acquirer must convert all "refer to card issuer" and "capture card" messages received from issuers to "declines."
  6. Additional authorization requirements for IFC gaming transactions. All IFC gaming losses authorized post-flight must be submitted for authorization for the net amount. All gaming transactions authorized during the flight will be for the full wager amount ($350 or a lower amount predetermined by the airline and gaming service provider). No gaming wins will be submitted for authorization.
  7. Clearing requirements for all IFC transactions.
    • An acquirer is not permitted to submit declined transactions (including those defined in 5.d. above) into clearing.
    • No surcharges or service fees may be assessed on any IFC transaction, including IFC gaming transactions.
  8. Additional clearing requirements for IFC gaming transactions.
    • IFC gaming transactions submitted for clearing must be for the net amount that is won or lost.
    • IFC gaming win transactions will be submitted as a credit transaction. Interchange will be paid to issuers by acquirers on gaming win transactions.
    • An acquirer may resubmit a gaming transaction for a different amount within the specified transaction limits if it was previously rejected for exceeding the specified transaction limits $3,500 for wins and $350 for losses.
  9. Effective date of the IFC blocked gaming file. Updates to the IFC Blocked Gaming File will be effective on the first and the 15th day of each month. MasterCard must receive account ranges or BINs that issuers choose to list on the next effective updated IFC Blocked Gaming File at least two weeks before the effective date.

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