Requirements for Self-Service Terminals

Requirements for Self-Service Terminals


Self-service terminal is a cardholder-activated terminal (CAT), especially one that includes the functions both of delivering and paying for products (for example, an automatic terminal at a gas or train station).


The following card acceptance requirements apply to the use of self-service terminals, in addition to the general requirements applicable to all CATs:

  1. Self-service terminals do not process personal identification numbers (PINs). They include, but are not limited to, automated gas station terminals.
  2. All self-service terminals must comply with the following requirements:
    • The floor limit for all transactions at self-service terminals is zero, which means that all transactions must be authorized, regardless of the transaction amount.
    • The merchant’s processing bank must read and transmit full, unaltered card account data.
  3. The authorization system will send all transactions identified as self-service terminals in the authorization request message to the card issuer.
  4. The maximum transaction amount for all transactions at self-service terminals is $100 or its equivalent.
  5. Chargebacks processed because no cardholder authorization was obtained for self-service terminal transactions will be allowed only if the card issuer verifies that the account number used in the transaction is fraudulent, as documented in a letter written by the cardholder to the card issuer. Additionally, the card issuer must block the account number and list it on Visa’s or MasterCard’s file with a “capture card” response until card expiration. Card issuers in the Europe region also must list such accounts on the European Stop List (ESL).
    Counterfeit transactions processed at self-service terminals for which the processing bank has transmitted the full magnetic stripe data in the authorization request message and for which an authorization was obtained are ineligible for chargebacks processed because of no cardholder authorization.
  6. A U.S.-based merchant acquiring automated gas station transactions at self-service terminals may forward an authorization request message for $1 if properly identified by MCC 5542 (automated fuel dispenser) and cardholder-activated terminal level indicator 2. If an authorization is obtained, the processing bank is protected from authorization related chargebacks “requested / required authorization not obtained”, or “exceeds floor limit – not authorized and fraudulent transaction” for transactions less than or equal to $75. The processing bank protection is limited to $75 for transactions that exceed $75, and card issuers may charge back only the difference between the transaction amount and the implied $75 limit.
  7. A self-service terminal that also is a hybrid terminal can perform fallback procedures from chip to magnetic stripe unless it is prohibited by regulations.


Image credit: Clarksvilleoil.com.

Add Comment

Read more:
Why Banks Want to Give You Credit Cards after Bankruptcy
Why Banks Want to Give You Credit Cards after Bankruptcy

Close