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4 Apr, 2022

“I’m sorry, but your credit card has been declined.”

We’ve all got this message once, “I’m sorry, but your credit card has been declined.”

We all get frustrated by this. Why would the store deny my order? But the reality is that there’s likely a very good reason why your credit card has been flagged or declined, and in most cases, the issue can be resolved with a simple phone call.

Here’s a look at some of the most common reasons why these issues might arise. It could indicate that your credit card issuer knows your account has been compromised, in which case a call to your credit card issuer should be able to quickly to clear up what has happened.

However it's usually a case of either unusual activity or the information entered was incorrect, so the issuer considers this “suspicious activity”.

Unusual activity

Types of unusual activity can be because your card was used to purchase an item in an unusual location. For instance, if you live in Boston and you suddenly make a purchase in Bangkok, your issuer might worry you've been hacked.

If you're shipping an item to a “vacation house” far away from your billing address, or if you placed an order to get delivered to someone else's house halfway around the world, that will raise red flags as well.

Making a large purchase, much higher than the average transaction in this particular store, will cause your card issuer to worry that someone has stolen your account numbers and has gone on a shopping spree.

Wrong information

Other reasons your card can get declined is simply because the information you entered was mistyped. For example, a merchant will usually check that the credit card holder’s billing address entered matches with what address the issuer has on file, providing merchants with an indicator of the validity of the transaction.

Merchants also will check if the CVV (Card Verification Value) numbers entered are correct. The CVV numbers are one indication that the customer is in possession of a genuine card.


There is no denying how frustrating it is to get denied. What goes on behind the scenes to stop the fraudsters and approve all of the legitimate orders, is surprisingly complex. And that’s why a good e-commerce fraud solution like FraudFix will analyze every transaction using 100’s of data points, and use machine learning to find suspicious fraud patterns, thereby stopping the fraud, while approving over 97% of the orders, automatically.