HotelHub is all set to support TMCs, online booking agents, OBT providers and corporates with the implementation of Strong Customer Authentication (SCA) as part of the EU’s revised Payment Services Directive (PSD2).
As the leading hotel technology solution in the corporate sector, HotelHub has already undertaken key developments to its web-based agent booking platform, which includes its API connection used by the business travel industry’s OBTs, to facilitate PSD2 compliance.
What Is Strong Customer Authentication?
SCA is a new set of rules that changes how credit and debit card holders confirm their identity when making online purchases to help protect them from fraud. Cardholders booking travel online will often need to undertake an extra step in the check-out process requiring them to verify their identity, typically via a one-time-password (OTP) generated by their OBT and delivered by SMS, phone or email.
The HotelHub functionality enables SCA codes and SCA exemption codes to be passed on to the hotel content channels’ API. Bookings made by TMCs or OBTs via HotelHub’s agency platform interface, that connects to the hotel content API, are deemed to be MOTO transactions and therefore SCA exempt. HotelHub relays this information to content providers for these types of transactions.
For end users of OBTs plugged into HotelHub’s API for booking hotel content, work has now also been completed to allow OBTs to pass on the 3DS SCA codes when the booking is made with the end user’s credit card. In this case HotelHub will relay the 3DS SCA information for the booking made. However, if the OBT end user is using the HotelHub billback payment mode with a virtual card generated by HotelHub, HotelHub then passes an exempt code for that booking.
HotelHub Chief Commercial Officer, Eric Meierhans, explained:
‘Although enforcement of SCA under the EU directive has been delayed until March 2022, and although we believe the SCA mechanisms will continue to evolve to better adapt to the business travel industry, card issuers will begin to test and introduce authentication requests well before then. Even though the timeline for suppliers switching on SCA before next March is at their discretion, many hotel groups and properties are already transitioning to the new layers of protection.
It’s important that we are ready to support all of our clients who need to be compliant with the EU directive. We have therefore invested in developing a PSD2-enabled channel in HotelHub and already piloted the functionality with one of our TMC clients. This has allowed us to prepare for receiving SCA codes from any OBT, pass them downstream to all channels accordingly and manage the logic of exemptions for offline and specific payment modes.’