Match List

The MATCH list is defined as a list of businesses that carry a level of risk that most payment processors find unacceptable.
« Back to Glossary Index


The MATCH list, formerly called the Terminated Merchant File (TMF) is a list of businesses that have an unacceptable level of risk. MATCH stands for Member Alert to Control High risk merchants. It is very difficult for these businesses to get merchant accounts and payment processing services. 

Banks, merchant services providers, and other financial institutions use this list as a way to identify businesses that they do not want to do business with. 

If your business is on the MATCH list, and you currently have merchant services in good standing, you should not need to worry about losing them. But it could be very difficult for you to find new services in the future. 

How do Businesses Get Put on the MATCH List?

Most of the time, businesses find themselves on the MATCH list if they have too many chargebacks. Credit card companies sometimes place businesses on the list, but this is usually done by the business’s acquiring bank. 

If your acquiring bank terminates your merchant account because you have too many chargebacks, Mastercard requires that they add your business to the MATCH list. Other reasons companies find themselves on the list include: 

  • Illegal activity
  • Fraud
  • Non-compliance
  • Security problems
  • Bankruptcy

When a business is added to the MATCH list, it is assigned a reason code. It could be any of the following: 

01 Account Data Compromise

02 Common Point of Purchase

03 Laundering

04 Excessive Chargebacks

05 Excessive Fraud

06 Unused

07 Fraud Conviction

08 Mastercard Questionable Merchant Audit Program 

09 Bankruptcy/Liquidation/Insolvency

10 Violation of Standards

11 Merchant Collusion

12 PCI-DSS Non-compliance

13 Illegal Transactions

14 Identity Theft

Many businesses are placed on the MATCH list for reasons that are outside their control. And once you are on the list, it is very difficult to get off it. 

What Happens When You are Placed on the MATCH list? 

If you are on the MATCH list, your business will be labeled high-risk. It will be very difficult - if not impossible - to find a payment processor or merchant account provider that is willing to work with your business. Those that do will probably charge you high fees for their services. 

Avoiding the MATCH List

The best way to avoid the MATCH list is to work with a payment processing company that will help you stay off it. 

Many offer chargeback prevention services that help keep your chargeback ratios low. 

« Back to Glossary Index

Related Terms:

CTA Title

Sed ut ullamcorper nulla, eu consequat turpis. Duis ac molestie orci. Suspendisse blandit ullamcorper eros

CTA Button