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Securus Payments Review
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UPDATE 5/21/19: Excel Corporation (now OLB Group) sold Securus Payments’s operations to Chyp, a newly created company that shares ownership, employees, and a location with Securus. Existing Securus merchants will be serviced by eVance, a subsidiary of OLB Group. Securus is not an active business despite its website still being up. For more information, see our Chyp review.
Securus Payments (securuspayments.com) is a Portland, Oregon-based merchant account provider that appears to be an ISO of First Data. Launched in 2009, the company shares ownership with the now-defunct Portland company Payprotec, which was the subject of a warning issued by the Better Business Bureau in 2013. In 2014, both Payprotec and Securus were acquired by Excel Corporation, and it appears that the Payprotec brand was retired while the Securus brand remained active. Securus Payments is located at 7724 SE Aspen Summit Dr., Suite 300, Portland, Oregon 97266 and is a registered ISO/MSP of Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. in Walnut Creek, California. Steven Lemma is listed as the founder and CEO of both Payprotec and Securus Payments.
- Sales & Marketing: Securus Payments hires independent sales agents and has received a moderate-to-high number of complaints about its sales practices.
- Costs & Contract: Securus Payments offers a three-year contract with an early termination fee of $495.
- Complaints & Service: Securus Payments has received more than 80 public complaints.
- BBB Rating: Securus Payments (as Excel Corporation) has an “A+” rating with the Better Business Bureau and has received 29 complaints in the last three years.
- Rates & Fees: How Merchants Got The Best Rates With Securus Payments
Securus Payments Customer Reviews
Here's What Their Clients Say
|Total Online Complaints||80+|
|Live Customer Support||Yes|
|Most Common Complaint||Hidden Fees|
We are currently able to locate at least 80 non-BBB Securus Payments complaints, many of which accuse the company of being a ripoff or a scam. Common themes among complainants include deceptive or high-pressure sales tactics by sales agents, expensive contract terms such as large, undisclosed termination fees, and difficulty reaching customer service representatives. Many merchants indicate that their greatest expenses while processing through Securus are related to their equipment leases, which can cost thousands of dollars to cancel. This is a rather high complaint rate for a company that has only been active since 2009. The company lists a direct phone line on its website, but this line is probably handled by eVance or Chyp at this point.
Securus Payments Online Ratings
Here's How They Rate Online
|Product & Service Complaints||4|
|Billing & Collection Complaints||0|
|Advertising & Sales Complaints||25|
|Guarantee & Warranty Complaints||0|
Note: We have adjusted this company’s BBB rating according to our own standards. To better understand why we adjust BBB ratings, please see our Rating Criteria.
No Current BBB Profile
The Better Business Bureau no longer maintains a profile for Securus Payments. Instead, it has folded complaints for Securus into its profile for Excel Corporation. The BBB currently gives Excel Corporation an “A+” rating and has not granted it BBB accreditation. Excel Corporation has received 29 complaints in the past three years, with 25 related to advertising or sales and 4 related to product or service issues. 7 complaints were successfully resolved, while the other 22 either were resolved to the dissatisfaction of the merchant or did not receive a final response from the merchant. One complaint did not receive a good faith response from Excel Corporation in the BBB’s estimation.
A Disappointing “D” Overall
Although Excel Corporation’s profile includes complaints that have been filed against companies besides Securus, we believe it is still a reliable source of merchant feedback about Securus and its affiliated companies. We have therefore adjusted the BBB’s rating according to how our criteria would score it.
Securus Payments Fees, Rates & Costs
A Closer Look at The Contract
|Swiped Rate||1.00% - 4.99%|
|Keyed-in Rate||1.00% - 4.99%|
|Early Termination Fee||$350+|
|PCI Compliance Fee||$80 Per Month|
|Equipment Lease Terms||48 Months (locked)|
Beware Liquidated Damages
According to the eVance Processing terms and conditions (available below), the company’s standard contract is a two-year agreement with automatic renewal for two-year terms and a liquidated damages-style early termination fee that is calculated “by multiplying (a) the number of months remaining from the date of termination to the end of the current Term, by (b) the average monthly processing fees paid by Merchant to Provider, plus Provider’s costs and attorneys’ fees incurred in connection with Merchant’s termination of this Agreement.” The company does not provide further pricing or terms on its website, but this uncapped cancellation fee alone is enough to warrant a “D” rating in this section.
Potentially Varied Terms
These are merely the company’s terms and conditions through Merrick Bank. It’s possible that eVance might also offer contract terms similar to those offered by Calpian Commerce’s subsidiaries (a three-year term with a $350 early termination fee and a PCI compliance fee of up to $185) or those offered by Securus Payments and Chyp (variable merchant account contract terms with 48-month, non-cancellable equipment leases). The company’s use of independent sales agents may allow for further variation in its pricing and fees.
We have located multiple merchant complaints that mention unauthorized billing and fees. The track records of Pipeline Data, Calpian Commerce, Securus Payments, and Chyp are also uniformly negative in this category. In our view, eVance Processing’s merchant agreement terms are not competitive with those offered by the cheapest merchant account providers. See the eVance Processing Terms and Conditions.
Securus Payments Employee Reviews & Sales Tacitcs
Should You Work For Them?
|Employs Independent Resellers||Yes|
|Advertises Deceptive Rates||Yes|
|Discloses All Important Terms||No|
Securus Payments appears to utilize in-house telemarketing and independent sales agents to market its services. Though common in the credit card processing industry, the use of independent sales agents is often a cause for complaint among merchants, as it can be difficult for any company to regulate the conduct of its independent sales entities. Securus appears to be no exception, as we have located numerous negative Securus Payments reviews that describe misrepresentation of rates, nondisclosure of terms, and aggressive or manipulative tactics by Securus sales agents. Additionally, some of these complaints have been filed by former employees of the company, who allege a lack of support for agents, non-payment of owed residuals, and an unprofessional workplace.
The Securus Payments website also contains a table promoting rates “as low as 1.59%” for swiped, internet, and MOTO transactions. While it’s entirely possible that these quotes accurately refer to the company’s “Qualified” rates, the website makes no mention of the “Mid-Qualified” and “Non-Qualified” rates that merchants would pay for the majority of their transactions. We consider this type of rate quoting to be deceptive, since it could give merchants an unrealistic expectation of the effective rate they will pay. Multiple merchant complaints confirm that there is sometimes a difference between the rates represented by agents and the rates that merchants ultimately pay to Securus.
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