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“ is Driving Me Nuts”

From: Seth Dillingham In Response To: Top of Thread.  
Date Posted: Monday, November 6, 2006 12:39:41 PM Replies: 1
Enclosures: None.

Macrobyte has its merchant account with a merchant service providor that uses for it's payment gateway. Confused? Macrobyte processes credit cards through company A, and company A's services are basically a "wrapper" for's. That's how it looks from the outside, anyway (at least to a programmer, since nobody else would call it a 'wrapper').

We've been doing things this way since late 1999 or early 2000; I can't remember exactly when. Years ago I knew why we were using company A, now I'm not so sure (and this is something I'm going to look into).

Earlier this year one of these companies (and I think it was, but sometimes it's hard to tell) decided they don't like their customers anymore. First, verybody's login ID's stopped working. We all had to create new ones, after answering a long list of security questions. In order to set up the new ID's, we had to provide our old ones, along with the old passwords... but I had been doing this in the same browser for so long that I had no idea what password to use: the browser on the computer in my office remembered it for me.

Eventually I figured it out. This morning my new password expired. The browser's eagerness to update it's password database interacted with's "reset your password" form in such a way as to lock me out of the system, again.

That's all fixed now, but wait, there's more!

In 2001 I started processing most cc transactions as 'batches'. That is, recurring transactions are stored in a database, and I jsut have to select which ones to run on a given day, enter any special notes to be attached to the individual transactions, and then let'er rip. A few minutes later each client receives an email receipt, and I receive a copy. Then at the same time every day I receive a Batch Settlement Report which tells me that everything was processed successfully, if there were any batches to settle that day. A few days later, the money is deposited into Macrobyte's account.

Back in June, the batches started failing. No settlement report, no money, and no notification of the failure! If I didn't notice that I hadn't been paid, then I was simply out of luck.

A very courteous rep from just told me that he can see that many of my batches have "errored out" in the last five months, but he couldn't see why. Nothing changed on my end, at all, so the problem must be at their end. He agreed, and said he would "try to have an engineer offer some suggestions."

Yeah. That's customer service in the twenty-first century. A courteous, friendly black hole from which no light or information can ever escape.

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