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Hosting Discussion > Operating a Web Hosting Business > Billing and Accounting > Instant Set Up or Manual Order Verification After New Order
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  Post #1 (permalink)   10-06-2012, 07:42 PM
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Just trying to get an idea of what others prefer. We currently do manual verification, but I have toyed with the idea of instant set up due to some customer complaints about the time it takes to set up an account. Do you set up accounts instantly or manually verify all orders?
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  Post #2 (permalink)   10-06-2012, 10:39 PM
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For us, all orders are instant verified via automated phone call (Maxmind). Once the order is approved through voice verification, then the order enters the setup queue. A staff member then manually reviews the information and approves for setup (within the hour).

Automation is a great thing, but just be aware that there are those out there ready to take advantage of an instant setup system where they can use a stolen credit card etc. Then you're faced with massive amounts of spam, blacklisted IPs and/or potential hack instances.

If you run the automated setup method, I've seen a few web hosting companies provide automatic setup but do not provide EMAIL until manually approved. This stops anyone from setting up an account just to mass mail others. Other places use Staging Servers for setups, and then move the client to a live machine once manually approved.

I'm a huge fan of automation, but you just have to be aware of the risks and decide if it's what you want to subject your company, clients and pocketbook to.
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  Post #3 (permalink)   10-07-2012, 01:55 AM
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We no longer offer instat setup, but do use the telephone verification service from Maxmind.

This method works well for us, it stopped a phisher several days ago when they tried to register and get hosting for "finances-inc-yahoo.com" but our system marked this as fraud which any genuine person would contact you and asked why they were marked as fraud, but not this person, within 10 minutes of the order placed with us, he registered and got hosting elsewhere. this did not last long after i informed to other host to look at the order and the domain. The admitted this was set up with instant setup, but as soon as i informed them they took down the hosting and had the domain reg cancelled.
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  Post #4 (permalink)   10-07-2012, 07:12 AM
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Yeah, the fraud orders are a pain and they are the reason I stopped instant approval and I do give customers a notice on the completed order page, but they seem to complain about set up time, etc.

Just trying to figure out a way to make customers happy and protect myself from fraud orders at same time. May try the phone verification, but not sure about customers who are out of country.
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  Post #5 (permalink)   10-07-2012, 09:06 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fliphost View Post
Just trying to figure out a way to make customers happy and protect myself from fraud orders at same time. May try the phone verification, but not sure about customers who are out of country.
phone verification is another line of security screening and works no matter what country the client is from, but if they dont complete this the order will be marked fraud for you to manually verify.
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  Post #6 (permalink)   10-07-2012, 09:59 AM
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phone verification is another line of security screening and works no matter what country the client is from, but if they dont complete this the order will be marked fraud for you to manually verify.
Thanks for all your help. Is there something similar for PayPal as well or is this another beast to tackle?
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  Post #7 (permalink)   10-07-2012, 12:05 PM
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Quote:
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May try the phone verification, but not sure about customers who are out of country.
With the system that we use, it calls the number, provides a PIN number and the user must enter that to complete the order. If the phone is never answered, there is no charge for the call. While it's more expensive if the call is going to Iraq or China etc, the $0.49 or whatever it is, is well worth it as if you have to cancel a domain registration, that's $1.00 plus whatever chargeback fees you might incur from the bank etc.

Definitely something to look into.

We notify our customers prior to the checkout process on how we do validation - we see very few order processes drop once the person starts the process.
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  Post #8 (permalink)   10-07-2012, 01:52 PM
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Quote:
We currently do manual verification
much better option as occasional the auto verification is fail.
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  Post #9 (permalink)   10-07-2012, 02:02 PM
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With the system that we use, it calls the number, provides a PIN number and the user must enter that to complete the order. If the phone is never answered, there is no charge for the call. While it's more expensive if the call is going to Iraq or China etc, the $0.49 or whatever it is, is well worth it as if you have to cancel a domain registration, that's $1.00 plus whatever chargeback fees you might incur from the bank etc.

Definitely something to look into.

We notify our customers prior to the checkout process on how we do validation - we see very few order processes drop once the person starts the process.

Thanks for the info, are you using the one with maxmind? That is the one available with my gateway.
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  Post #10 (permalink)   10-07-2012, 04:09 PM
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Thanks for the info, are you using the one with maxmind? That is the one available with my gateway.
Yes Conor uses the maxmind system, so do we and it works well

Quote:
Originally Posted by handsonhosting View Post
For us, all orders are instant verified via automated phone call (Maxmind).
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  Post #11 (permalink)   12-23-2012, 10:48 AM
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We use Maxmind to prevent fraud. With this and including manually verification we can offer Instant setup.
But we do look over all orders and take action from there after it's been created.
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  Post #12 (permalink)   12-23-2012, 10:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Settoz View Post
We use Maxmind to prevent fraud. With this and including manually verification we can offer Instant setup.
But we do look over all orders and take action from there after it's been created.
If a client has to wait for you to manually verify an order then its not an instant setup
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  Post #13 (permalink)   12-23-2012, 05:02 PM
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We use instant setup for low risk accounts (according to Maxmind), but the accounts that are setup as soon as payment is received has a custom set of rules programmed into it. Without going into too much detail and giving away how to defeat our system, most accounts are verified by a sales rep taking into account the Maxmind score and a few other additional details. A few things that throw up red flags during the sales verification process are domain registration. If its already registered and the name doesn't match that of the new account holder, a little more digging is required. What does the domain currently have on it? Is it used for an online pharmacy, does it have warez on it or any other material that is considered high risk. If no, accounts are usually setup within 15 - 20 minutes of the order being placed. If yes than a phone call is placed or an email sent out for further verification.
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  Post #14 (permalink)   12-23-2012, 05:17 PM
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we use Maxmins along with their telephone verification service, but will manually review orders as a lot of clients even though we have a big red notice on order form that not to use free emails (hotmail/gmail etc.) as maxmind will mark as fraud still do this, so by manually reviewing accounts allows use to check and then set account pending so it can be paid. manually reviewing also prevents anyone registering phishing domains automatically on payment.
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  Post #15 (permalink)   12-24-2012, 03:06 AM
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We take a little more unconventional approach to order verification. We check multiple things including but not limited to the IP address used for the order and geographic location of the card used.

We further follow up all orders with a phone call from one of our staff. This accomplishes two things for us. It allows us to verify the account information is correct and allows us to talk with the client to ensure the hosting option they selected actually fits their needs. We have had a few that picked the wrong package and we were able to get them into something better suited for their needs.

We make at least three attempts to contact the client within 48 hours. After the first call, we will send an email notifying them that we are attempting to reach them to verify their order. If the client refuses or doesn't answer, we cancel the order and refund the purchase back to the method used.

Further, we do not accept orders from certain countries that have proven to be a haven for rampant fraud. China is the biggest country from which we no longer accept orders from. There is no exception to this rule. Right, wrong, or indifferent, these methods have proven to be very valuable in preventing us from having fraud orders, as well as shows the client that we want to make sure they are completely satisfied with the product.

Other than dedicated and cloud servers, most orders once verified are set up and ready for the client in 10 minutes or less. Dedicated servers can take up to 6 hours after order verification to be ready, however most are ready in as little as 2 hours.

Whatever method you choose, it is extremely important that you find the method that works for you and your risk tolerance levels. What works for us, wont work for others. Good Luck!
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