Advertiser Disclosure

🎁 Get a free credit card processing savings analysis from Fattmerchant today!

What Is A Virtual Terminal?

Advertiser Disclosure: Our unbiased reviews and content are supported in part by affiliate partnerships, and we adhere to strict guidelines to preserve editorial integrity.
Emily Hale

Emily Hale

Emily is a writer, strategist, and freelance consultant based in Indianapolis. She is driven to create content that empowers her readers and her clients to make better choices in their business and their lives. When she's not in the thick of researching and developing blogs for Merchant Maverick, she likes to cook from scratch for her family or escape outdoors and meander through nature with her rescue pup.

We've done in-depth research on each and confidently recommend them.

We've done in-depth research on each and confidently recommend them.

Leave a comment

22 Comments

Responses are not provided or commissioned by the vendor or bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the vendor or bank advertiser. It is not the vendor or bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

    Alfani Ngwewa

    I am selling African arts and paintings online I need the merchant account for my business . I am based in South Africa .

      Jessica Dinsmore

      Hi Alfani,

      I think Instabill may be worth looking into, considering your location. Our reviews are typically U.S. providers, but it looks like Instabill does support South Africa and eCommerce. Get in touch and see if they are a good fit. Good luck to you!

        JJ

        We have a business located in the US that specialises in webhosting and electronics repairs. We are planning to relocate to Asia however would like to accept payments globally. We have not had much success in the US in securing a credit card processor. What is the best way forward?

        Warm Regards,
        JJ

          Jessica Dinsmore

          Hi JJ,

          I’d suggest starting with our post on offshore merchant accounts, which also has links to several other helpful resources for you. Best of luck!

            We've done in-depth research on each and confidently recommend them.

            Hardial Sahota

            Hi I am intrested in VT please help me with your contact number to reach you.
            My number USA +1440-550-9545 Hardial Sahota

              Emily Hale

              Hi Hardial,

              If you are interested in setting up a virtual terminal to take payments, I recommend checking out some of the companies mentioned in the post. Some companies offer virtual terminals with their basic plan. Dharma and Payment Depot are two credit card processors that provide free keyed-entry into a virtual terminal along with their POS solution. Many mobile credit card processors, such as Square, also include a free virtual terminal. Best of luck!

                Derrick Feaster

                My understanding is that everyone needs to be PCI compliant. The owners of the virtual terminal are PCI compliant, but that doesn’t mean I am PCI compliant when I use it, unless the PC I am using is properly networked and segmented.

                  Brad

                  Yes this is the frustration I have with the advertising for virtual terminals. I can’t see how a virtual terminal is pci compliant if the customer is using it on a unsecure network or computer. The computer could have a key logger or other malware on it to intercept the credit card number before it is processed. Or even recording software.

                    Benedict

                    Hello,I want to know if you can recommend good company that provides online payment solutions to Nigeria based company and NGO via International 2D payment gateway, MOTO and POS services?

                      This comment refers to an earlier version of this post and may be outdated.

                      Dakota Fillet

                      Hi Benedict,
                      Unfortunately, we don’t have a lot of expertise on payment processors outside the US/Canada just yet. We have heard of a company called Paystack, though we have not reviewed them, so we can’t confidently give an assessment one way or the other.

                        This comment refers to an earlier version of this post and may be outdated.

                        Debbie

                        Can I ask how safe these are in terms of cyber security. What happens if there is a data breach? Where is the info stored etc?

                          This comment refers to an earlier version of this post and may be outdated.

                          Jessica Dinsmore

                          Hi Debbie,

                          Great questions! Generally speaking, if you’re using a virtual terminal and payment vault (with stored card information) that’s offered by a processor, they’ve already built in the security features. One that’s PCI compliant (they all should be) will allow you to put in the numbers and charge a card, but you won’t see anything but the last for digits of the card for security reasons. None of the information will be stored on your site or on your devices. It’s all encrypted, and sometimes tokenized, by the processor.

                          In the event of a breach, it would likely depend on who’s at fault. For example, if a store had an employee who exploited the system, the store would be liable, but if, say, a third party hacked the processor, the processor would be at fault. I hope that helps!

                            This comment refers to an earlier version of this post and may be outdated.

                            shabih Ahmad

                            sir
                            we r registered society need virtual terminal please help
                            7717703424

                              This comment refers to an earlier version of this post and may be outdated.

                              Jessica Dinsmore

                              Hi Shabih,

                              Thank you for your question! It looks like your business is located in India, so I think Instabill is going to be the best option for you. Best of luck to you!

                                This comment refers to an earlier version of this post and may be outdated.

                                We've done in-depth testing of each and confidently recommend them.

                                Arun Kumar Arya

                                Hi I am intrested in VT please help me with your contact number to reach you. My number 0091-9874114333

                                  This comment refers to an earlier version of this post and may be outdated.

                                  Chloe Bahal

                                  Hi Arun,
                                  I would recommend taking a look at Instabill.

                                    This comment refers to an earlier version of this post and may be outdated.

                                    Zia

                                    Regarding the new “chip” readers – when one has a card reader that hooks up to a virtual terminal, is this considered a POS terminal, ie – does the virtual terminal card reader need to be compliant with the new EMV requirements as far as liability goes (being that the card IS present)??

                                      This comment refers to an earlier version of this post and may be outdated.

                                      Tom DeSimone

                                      Hi Zia,

                                      It depends. If the card reader just collects the card number and enters it into the form, then the transactions are being processed as “card-not-present” and it doesn’t matter if the chip is read. But some virtual terminals allow you to process transactions as “card-present,” which gives you lower rates but also means that you open yourself up to fraud liability if you swipe a counterfeit chip card after October 1st.

                                      Most of the time the readers used with virtual terminal just collect the card number and enter into the form, though, in which case it shouldn’t make a difference. You might want to contact your service provider to verify.

                                        This comment refers to an earlier version of this post and may be outdated.

                                        Zia

                                        Thank you Tom 🙂

                                          This comment refers to an earlier version of this post and may be outdated.

                                          Virgil

                                          Curtis that is an excellent explanation of a virtual terminal and how it works. Very well put. However a couple of updates are appropriate since this the time this article was written.

                                          First, signatures are available now with electronic signatures being captured in the same way card data is captured – instead of in this case you’re using an electronic signature pad via the computers USB port in addition to the card reader. Plus, our processer even takes it a step further by enabling remote signature capture, (via email), so a signature can even be obtained on phone orders.

                                          Sceond, in addition to MOTO merchants I would add these are ideal solutions for any business which captures transaction data from more than one terminal (e.g., due to having data from more than one department and/or more than one store location). This solution enables these businesses to consolidate all their transaction data into one central location, so with a couple clicks of a mouse they can view, print, export or otherwise access their data for any use, saving them significant time, work and money.

                                            This comment refers to an earlier version of this post and may be outdated.

                                            Tom DeSimone

                                            Hi Virgil,

                                            Thanks for your comment. We love PayJunction for this same reason!

                                              This comment refers to an earlier version of this post and may be outdated.

                                              Curtis

                                              Any Authorize.net reseller can offer this.

                                                This comment refers to an earlier version of this post and may be outdated.

                                              Leave a Reply

                                              Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

                                              Your Review

                                              Comment moderation is enabled. Your comment may take some time to appear.
                                              Please read the "User Review and Comment Policy" before posting.

                                              Share

                                              Featured Offer: We Recommend QuickBooks 🎉

                                              Get 50% QuickBooks Online for a limited time!

                                              Take it for a spin with a free trial.

                                              Try QuickBooks Today

                                              We Recommend Payment Depot 🏆

                                              Payment Depot is one of our top picks for credit card processing!

                                               

                                               

                                              We love Payment Depot's predictable pricing and excellent service.

                                              Get Started With Payment Depot

                                              Get started with no commitment today.

                                              We Recommend Brex Corporate Card for Startups 🏆

                                              Brex Corporate Card for Startups is one of our top picks for business credit cards!

                                               

                                               

                                              For a limited time get 50,000 rewards points when you spend $1000 with Brex.

                                              Get Started With Brex Corporate Card for Startups

                                              Get started with no commitment today.

                                              We Recommend PaymentCloud 🏆

                                              PaymentCloud is one of our top picks for credit card processing!

                                               

                                               

                                              We love PaymentCloud's predictable pricing and excellent service.

                                              Get Started With PaymentCloud

                                              Get started with no commitment today.

                                              We Recommend PaymentCloud 🏆

                                              PaymentCloud is one of our top picks for credit card processing!

                                               

                                               

                                              We love PaymentCloud's predictable pricing and excellent service.

                                              Get Started With PaymentCloud

                                              Get started with no commitment today.

                                              ⭐️ Featured Promo! ⭐️

                                              Sign up now and qualify for a limited time deal!

                                              Standard Plan: One month free ($29.95 value)
                                              Plus Plan: Two months free ($159.90 value)
                                              Pro Plan: Three months free ($899.85 value)

                                              Learn More

                                              At BigCommerce

                                              We Recommend PaymentCloud 🏆

                                              PaymentCloud is one of our top picks for credit card processing!

                                               

                                               

                                              We love PaymentCloud's predictable pricing and excellent service.

                                              Get Started With PaymentCloud

                                              Get started with no commitment today.

                                              We Recommend PaymentCloud 🏆

                                              PaymentCloud is one of our top picks for credit card processing!

                                               

                                               

                                              We love PaymentCloud's predictable pricing and excellent service.

                                              Get Started With PaymentCloud

                                              Get started with no commitment today.

                                              Get 60% Off FreshBooks ✨

                                              FreshBooks is offering 60% off of their accounting and invoicing software for six months to help support businesses during COVID-19.

                                              Start For Free

                                              At FreshBooks

                                              We Recommend ShopKeep POS 🏆

                                              ShopKeep POS is one of our top picks for Point of Sale software!

                                               

                                               

                                              ShopKeep is offering free eCommerce tools and free online ordering for all existing and new customers for the next 3 months!

                                              Get Started With ShopKeep POS

                                              Get started with no commitment today.

                                              We Recommend Stamps.com 🏆

                                              Stamps.com is one of our top picks for shipping software!

                                               

                                               

                                              Start a 4-week free trial with Stamps.com and get $5 in free postage to test it out. No promo code required.

                                              Get Started With Stamps.com

                                              Get started with no commitment today.

                                              Our unbiased reviews and content are supported in part by affiliate partnerships, and we adhere to strict guidelines to preserve editorial integrity. The editorial content on this page is not provided by any of the companies mentioned and has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities. Opinions expressed here are author’s alone.

                                              We Highly Recommend 🏆

                                              is one of our top picks for credit card processing!

                                              We love 's predictable pricing and excellent service.

                                              Their standard offer has no early termination fee and no junk fees. 👍

                                              Learn More At

                                              Sign up for the Maverick Newsletter

                                              • We occasionally send out emails with special offers.