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What is the Difference Between Ethoca & Verifi?
What is the Difference Between Ethoca & Verifi?

Why do I need alerts from both Ethoca and Verifi? How do the services differ?

Jenna Acquaviva avatar
Written by Jenna Acquaviva
Updated over a week ago

There are two vendors who maintain prevention alert networks: Ethoca™ and Verifi™.

The basic functionality of both alert providers is the same. They both help merchants refund disputed transactions to avoid chargebacks. However, the way the vendors go about providing that functionality is slightly different.


Prevention alerts are a very valuable chargeback management tool. They can effectively stop certain chargebacks from happening.

But to achieve the best results possible, you need to understand some of the behind-the-scenes details. If you haven’t already, we suggest you first read these two help center articles.

The Most Noteworthy Differences Between Ethoca and Verifi

There are a few key differences between the Ethoca and Verifi processes.

Descriptor Enrollment

Billing descriptors play an important role in prevention alert functionality and management. Alert platforms use billing descriptors to determine which business processed the disputed transaction.

Ethoca and Verifi use different processes for matching descriptors to businesses.

Ethoca matches descriptors two different ways. The technology looks for descriptors that “start with” a phrase or sends alerts based on an “exact match”.

Verifi also has two criteria matching options. The platform will look for an “exact match” descriptor or match to a registered customer service number.

Reason Codes

Reason codes help explain why transactions were disputed. Ethoca and Verifi address different dispute reasons.

Ethoca alerts were originally created to address criminal fraud. Therefore, Ethoca does not provide reason codes for its alerts since they are all the result of fraud claims.

Verifi alerts are for disputes associated with both fraud and non-fraud reason codes. Non-fraud disputes are authorization issues, processing errors, or other cardholder complaints.

Issuer Networks

Almost all of the large banks participate in both Ethoca and Verifi programs. However, large banks have several different bank identification numbers (BINs). These BINs are used to classify different types of accounts (debit or credit), card brands (Visa or Mastercard), cardholder risk (low or high credit scores), and more.

Because each prevention alert vendor has a slightly different area of expertise, banks might not enroll all BINs with both alert vendors. And, some BINs are not registered in either program.

Ethoca has a greater coverage network for Mastercard accounts and a large portfolio of international BINs.

Verifi has a larger portfolio of Visa accounts and predominantly U.S. BINs.

Do I Need Alerts From Both Ethoca and Verifi?

Some merchants receive alerts from just one vendor. Most merchants use both.

Which strategy is best for your business?

The strategy you use should depend on who you sell to, the types of disputes you receive, and what your goals are.

In general, we suggest the following:

Use Verifi if...

  • the majority of your chargebacks are non-fraud reason codes (merchandise not received, credit not issued, etc.)

  • you sell to a predominately US customer base

Use Ethoca if...

  • the majority of your chargebacks are fraud reason codes

  • you sell to customers within the US, but also globally

Use both if...

  • you receive a mixture of both fraud and non-fraud chargebacks

  • you want the most comprehensive protection possible

If you’d like to upgrade your account to receive more complete protection, contact our support team today. You can reach us via the chat feature in Midigator or by emailing

How to Achieve Better Results with Ethoca & Verifi

Regardless of whether you receive alerts from Ethoca, Verifi, or both, there are a few management tips you’ll want to know about.

Be sure to visit these other help center articles to ensure you are preventing chargebacks with the highest ROI possible.

If this feature isn’t visible in your Midigator account and you want to know why, read this article.

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