accessCARD Command FAQs
What is a Virtual Card Number?
A Virtual Card Number is a credit card number that offers increased security for making internet, mail order or telephone purchases or for making recurring payments, since its association with your real card number is never revealed. No plastic is generated so it can't be used at in-store merchants and you have the same spending control over its use as your company's real account numbers. It's easy to create as many as you need: Enter a nickname, add optional spending controls, and select "Get a Virtual Card" for each one.
Why was my employee's transaction declined? If I only set the control on Alert?
A transaction may be declined for many reasons other than controls you might have set. (i.e. not enough credit availability).
What happens to the Virtual Card Number accounts I created if my Business card is lost or stolen?
When you report a lost or stolen card a new account number is created for you and new plastic is mailed out. Those updates are automatically sent to our website application so that when you go back into accessCARD Command to view your account numbers - both real card number and Virtual Card Numbers, you will see that the new account number's last four digits for your card as the Business Owner, as well as for all of your Virtual Card Numbers. Transaction history will reflect the old account numbers prior to the update and the new account numbers going forward.
What if I need to send alerts or decline information to a different mobile phone or email addresses temporarily?
You only need to go into the accessCARD Command Controls and make the update.
What if I need help with setting employee controls or have a question about the reason for a decline on one of my transactions?
Call our Customer Service Department at 1-888-798-4600. Our Business Card Representatives are ready to assist you.
When the Virtual Card Number is issued, does this reduce the credit availability on my real card number?
No. Not until the Virtual Card Number has been used with a merchant to make a purchase.
Does the Virtual Card Number expiration date affect my real card number expiration date?
No. The Virtual Card Number expiration date does not have any bearing on your Real Card Number expiration.
How soon after I update an employee's controls will I begin seeing alerts?
Just moments after you have saved your update to the employee's controls and a qualifying purchase is made.
Will I always receive my alerts moments after a qualifying purchase?
Most alerts are close to real-time; however there can be instances when you will not receive your alert right away. Please note that these instances are infrequent and most alerts will be close to real-time.
- Merchant delay in processing: some catalogue and internet merchants do not process your purchase until it is ready to ship, others process orders overnight, so your alert would be delayed until after the purchase is processed.
- Text or email provider delay: Your alert could be potentially delayed by the text or email provider that you use.
Will I receive an alert for all purchase attempts that meet the control criteria that I've set?
There are some types of purchases that a merchant will directly approve without first requesting that MasterCard or Citizens Bank verify your account information and approve the purchase. In these cases, the purchase will not generate an alert even though you will eventually see the purchase on your statement. Examples of this can include smaller, in-store purchases or at locations such as toll roads, parking garages or car washes.
Why do I sometimes receive multiple alerts for a single purchase? Is my account being charged multiple times when this occurs?
Receiving multiple alerts does not mean your account has been charged multiple times. Merchants within the travel and entertainment industry often check whether you have available funds or sufficient available credit to cover an estimate of your final purchase amount. In these cases you may receive an alert with an estimated purchase amount that could vary from the final purchase amount on your statement. Merchants that typically perform this type of checking include airlines, car rentals, cruise lines, restaurants, hotels/motels, travel agencies, railways and some internet merchants. When using your card at these merchants, you may receive more than one alert with amounts that vary from your final purchase.
Why do I receive alerts even if the purchase was declined or had a different amount approved?
Alerts are intended to alert you about any attempted purchase that meets the alert rules you have set, regardless of whether or not the purchase is eventually approved. We also have the option to approve only a portion of your attempted purchase amount. Since alerts are generated from the original, attempted purchase amount, your alert message may show an amount different from the amount the bank ultimately approved.
Why is the amount on my alert sometimes different than my final purchase amount, or the amount on my statement?
In some cases there can be a variance between the purchase amount on the alert you receive and the final purchase amount on your statement. The following represents examples of types of purchases where this may occur. Gratuity environments may add an estimated tip to your purchase, or may not include the tip at all when they process your purchase. Automated fuel pumps may authorize your card for $1.00 or an estimated purchase amount, prior to allowing you to use the pump. Vending machines may authorize your card for the largest item within the machine prior to enabling your selection. Internet merchants may authorize differing amounts due to out-of-stock items and partial shipments. Currency conversion rates and fees on any international transactions may also be included. All of these examples will create a variance between the merchant's initial authorized amount, which generates your alert, and the final purchase amount on your statement.
How do geography rules work with alerts?
Geography alerts are based on the merchant's country code information (where the merchant is located). This type of alert is only applicable for in-store transactions where you use your card. Online, mail order or phone transactions, where you use only your card number and not your physical card, are not subject to geography alerts since they could potentially trigger an unexpected geography alert if the online store is incorporated or based out of another country.
Why do I sometimes receive an unexpected budget alert?
Budget alerts are based on accumulated purchase amounts over a period of time (e.g. weekly, monthly). Before permitting you to use a service (such as pumping gas, or staying at a hotel), some merchants will first check whether you have available funds or sufficient available credit to cover an estimate of your final purchase amount. Performing this check will sometimes produce an unexpected Budget Alert if the transaction brings you over the budget limit you set for that account number. Once your purchase is completed (you finish pumping your gas or check out of the hotel), the actual purchase amount will be recorded and any necessary adjustments will be made to your running budget total. Your running budget total will always reset at the end of the budget period.
What happens to my budget alerts if a purchase is cancelled, declined or if I return items on my purchase?
Since budget alerts are intended to alert you about any attempted purchase that causes you to exceed your defined budget, you will receive a budget alert at the time you attempt to make your purchase if, in fact, you would exceed your budget with that purchase. If your purchase is then cancelled, declined by your bank, or returned, adjustments will be made to your running budget total. Any inaccuracies introduced to your running budget total by these circumstances will always reset at the end of the budget period.
Why is the text within my alert sometimes unrecognizable?
Some information, such as a retailer's or merchant's name, that is included within an alert is taken directly from the merchant's systems. This text is not edited and may be truncated or unrecognizable. If you are unable to identify the merchant specified on your alert, please contact our Customer Service Department at 1-888-798-4600. Our Business Card Representatives are ready to assist you.