A Sales Arm of North American Bancard
SekureCard Services (sekurecardservices.com), Sekure Merchant Solutions (sekuremerchants.com), and Sekure Cost Review (sekurecostreview.com) appear to be the same merchant account provider operating in the U.S and possibly Canada. SekureCard (also spelled Sekure Card) and the other two companies present themselves as referral agents for multiple processors, but there is a significant amount of evidence online indicating that they are all primarily resellers of North American Bancard—one of our worst-rated merchant account providers. Headquartered in New York City (sources indicate an office in Montreal as well), the companies do not disclose the identities of their executive leadership.
- Sales & Marketing: SekureCard appears to rely on telephone appointment setters and has received a moderate number of complaints about its sales practices.
- Costs & Contract: SekureCard appears to offer a three-year contract through North American Bancard with a liquidated damages-style early termination fee.
- Complaints & Service: SekureCard has received more than 50 public complaints.
- BBB Rating: SekureCard has an “A+” rating with the Better Business Bureau and has received 92 complaints in the past three years.
- Rates & Fees: How Merchants Got The Best Rates With SekureCard
Sales & Marketing
Key Points - Sales & Marketing
|Uses Independent Resellers||Yes|
|Promotes Deceptive Rate Quotes||No|
|Discloses All Important Terms||No|
SekureCard appears to market itself primarily through telemarketing. The vast majority of complaints about the company cite aggressive, repeated sales calls from SekureCard representatives, sometimes in defiance of merchant requests to stop calling. Although this problem should be easily corrected and indicates a troubling lack of organization within the company, a larger problem with SekureCard has to do with how it represents itself.
There’s More To The Story
Both the SekureCard and Sekure Merchant Solutions websites emphasize the company’s mission to educate merchants and lower their rates, even including prompts for merchants to undergo a free initial statement analysis. These websites generally push a message of merchant advocacy, presenting the company as more of a referral service than a sales organization. The trouble with this representation is that we have located multiple sources online indicating that SekureCard is simply a reseller of North American Bancard’s merchant services rather than an independent rate review service. If this is the case, then SekureCard is going to great lengths to paint itself as something it is not. There is currently no mention of North American Bancard on the SekureCard websites, and the company does not disclose at any point that it is affiliated with any one particular processor. Some merchants have reported receiving service from both Global Payments and North American Bancard through SekureCard, but North American Bancard is simply a reseller of Global Payments.
Expect Only One Option
As far as we are able to determine at this time, SekureCard’s primary mission is to sell North American Bancard contracts, and merchants should keep this in mind when they receive a call from the company.
SekureCard / Sekure Merchant Solutions Marketing Example
Costs & Contract
Key Points - Costs & Contract
|Termination Fee||Liquidated Damages|
|PCI Compliance Fee||Variable|
Long-Term Contract With Cancellation Fees
According to merchant complaints, the standard SekureCard contract appears to be a three-year agreement through North American Bancard with a Liquidated Damages early termination fee, expensive tiered pricing, and various other fees. We are unable to locate specifics about PCI Compliance fees or monthly minimum fees because these terms vary depending on a merchant’s size, business type, and time in business. It should be noted that we have found no evidence of SekureCard providing a merchant account through any other providers besides North American Bancard.
Beware Liquidated Damages
The primary factor lowering SekureCard’s rating in this section is its apparent inclusion of a Liquidated Damages clause in its contracts. A Liquidated Damages fee is calculated by taking either a set amount (sometimes about $25) or a merchant’s average monthly processing costs and multiplying that amount by the remaining months in a contract. This effectively forces a merchant to buy out the rest of the contract upon early cancellation, and it can cost merchants in excess of $900. We consider this type of fee to be excessive. SekureCard offers average to below-average contract terms in our assessment, and it is our belief that merchants would be better off looking for cheaper merchant account providers. We have accordingly lowered SekureCard’s rating in this section.
Complaints & Service
Key Points - Complaints & Service
|Live Customer Support||Yes|
|Most Common Complaint||Sales Tactics|
Annoying Sales Calls
There are currently over 50 SekureCard negative reviews online, many of which accuse the company of being a scam. By far the largest issue mentioned by complainants is the company’s telemarketing strategy, which they allege is generally aggressive, deceptive, and rude. Additional issues include extremely high cancellation fees, increased rates after signing, and difficulty cancelling service. We have also found some positive testimonials about SekureCard’s services, although the validity of these reports is usually called into question by other reviewers. Some merchants have reported to us that SekureCard claims that “most of the reviews you see online are from other processors . There is allot of competition out there.” However, we have seen nothing to corroborate this claim.
Customer Support Not a Major Issue
Overall, the company’s inability to effectively regulate its sales calls reflects poorly on its organization, but there are not many complaints directly criticizing the company’s customer service. SekureCard therefore receives an average “C” grade in this section.
Key Points - BBB
|Product & Service Complaints||32|
|Billing & Collection Complaints||8|
|Advertising & Sales Complaints||52|
|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.
More Than 90 Complaints
SekureCard Services (listed as Sekure Merchant Solutions on its profile) is an accredited business with the Better Business Bureau. As of this review, the company has an “A+” rating with the BBB and has had 92 complaints filed against it in the last 36 months (up from 82 as of our last review). Fifty-two of those complaints stemmed from advertising or sales issues, eight from billing or collection issues, and another 32 from problems with Sekure’s products or services. Of the total complaints, 52 were successfully resolved, while 40 either were resolved to the dissatisfaction of the merchant or did not receive a final response from the merchant.
What Merchants Say
SekureCard has also received 345 positive informal reviews on its profile as well as 101 negative reviews. The negative reviews have increased in recent months, mostly due to Sekure’s persistent telemarketing efforts. Here’s the most recent negative review, from a merchant who could not figure out how to shut down sales calls from SekureCard:
Be forewarned because they can seem very convincing but alas, THIS IS A SCAM. They prey on small, independent businesses and lie about their purpose, intentions, and motivation. As soon as you tell them “No Thanks” they become very pushy and very rude. I don’t want to pay additional fees, I will not do business with you, STOP CALLING ME.
Not an “A+” Performance in Our Opinion
In light of this information, we have adjusted the BBB’s rating to a “C.”
About Phillip Parker
Phillip Parker is a former merchant services sales agent who believes the industry has been overrun by people who engage in fraud and deception in order to steal from hard working business owners. He created this website to help you avoid the bad players, save money on fees, and to get peace of mind with your merchant account. If you would like to help support his work, learn more about our cost reduction service. We can evaluate your statement, tell you exactly how much you're overpaying, and then help you dramatically reduce your fees with your current credit card processor. Looking to switch instead? See our list of the best merchant account providers.Schedule a Consultation with Phillip