Discrete billing/Visa gift cards and paypal

By | December 14, 2010

This question doesn’t come up too often. (Though maybe it would if I had more traffic.)

Yesterday a potential customer emailed me with a problem. She didn’t want her name associated with purchasing my recordings. So she tried to make the purchase with an anonymous Visa gift card. But Paypal, my payment processor, rejected the card and she didn’t know why.

So I did some digging and found this site that says Paypal will only accept gift cards with a name and address listed in Visa’s database. It’s a security measure to verify that you’re the real owner of the card:

    http://www.ehow.com/how_5685637_use-visa-gift-card-paypal.html

That, unfortunately, doesn’t help the people who want to make anonymous purchases to protect their reputation.

I can sympathize with the need for discretion. So I set up discrete credit card billing. Credit card statements will show “HDMP3” as the merchant, which would be totally meaningless to anyone who hadn’t previously bought one of my recordings.  

And of course, I never share my customer lists.