What is a Virtual Terminal?

Go Cardless and Secure with MOTO Payments.

Written by Rebekah Moss 16 Sep 2019 - 3 minutes reading time

Freelancers and business professionals worldwide still take phone payments, despite the growing world of e-commerce. Vastly convenient for settling invoices or taking prepayments for orders; MOTO payments accounted for £48bn of spending within the UK in 2016.

What are MOTO payments?

A necessary element in taking phone (MOTO - Mail Order/Telephone Order) payments and other card-not-present payments, such as those by post; a virtual terminal is simply as it states – a virtual rendering of a credit card terminal - with no hardware components.

A virtual terminal sits atop of a payment gateway that processes payments; acting as an internet-based interface for merchants to interact with and take payments from - within the portal between customers and their acquiring bank.

As it sits atop of the payment gateway, Total Processing clients can also see their POS and e-commerce transactions with Total Control.

What is Total Control?

Total control is an optimised CRM system that consolidates customer data for ultimate management and engagement by the merchant.

Within Total Control, your MOTO payments will be combined with the 198 available payments methods processed via Total Processing’s gateway for your business.

Total Control also features the capabilities needed to process refunds and reverse transactions, as well as, capture pre-authorisations.

Total Control is also equipped with card updater facilities for Visa and Mastercard customers, automatically fetching new card information as it enters the gateway.

With all your payments in one place, access endless insights and live reports regarding your transactions, filtering them to your customised needs.

How it Works:

Like a customer-payment sheet, wherein a customer manually enters their card data, a virtual terminal is almost identical in requiring the same information.

To facilitate the processing of a payment, a virtual terminal requires an internet connection. Once the merchant has logged in, they can then begin to enter the required information: Virtual Terminal

The login is provided by the payment processing provider.

When setting up a payment with the customer, the merchant is prompted by the form presented to them within the virtual terminal.

Once the information is filled out, they can submit the form and then the payment is charged securely using the processor’s integrated securities.


Payments taken via a virtual terminal utilise AVS - address verification security - to clarify the identity of the cardholder on behalf of the merchant.

Provided by processors and issuing banks, an AVS check will provide a match estimate against the billing address provided by the customer to the merchant, with the one provided to the issuing bank. This will determine whether the payment will be accepted or declined.

A CVC or CVV code is also used to securely process payments. Referring to the 3 digits on the back of a cardholder’s debit or credit card; the card verification code is used to verify physical possession of a card in card-not-present transactions. When taking a payment, this information will be correlated with the issuer for a match.

The Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard, commonly known as PCI DSS compliance, is integrated throughout our terminals and gateway to ensure that your payments are secured to the highest level. Be assured that your payments are handled with the utmost trust, with no downturn on speed and efficiency.

Including 3D secure measures, these methods verify identity in card-not-present situations and thereby reduce chargebacks. The security built within Total Processing’s virtual terminal aligns with other protective measures such as rolling reserves and upfront bonds necessitated when setting up a merchant account.

In choosing Total Processing to process your MOTO payments, experience tailored fees per transaction suited to your business. With no minimum processing required, or any exit or hidden fees, contact us today to get started with a quote!









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