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Why do I need a Card Not Present account with Authorize.Net?

Authorize.Net is one of our payment gateways that allows you to accept credit card payments online.

For steps to enable Authorize.Net on your Invoices, check out our article here.

To create an Authorize.Net account, you can get started here. It is important that you create a Card Not Present account in Authorize.Net in order for it to work with FreshBooks (you’re asked to choose when creating one).

Card Not Present means you’re able to:

  • Accept payment from a cardholder without seeing the plastic card in person
  • Card information is manually keyed in instead of being swiped through a card reader

This is best for using e-commerce and online platforms, like FreshBooks.


The other type, Card Present, means the cardholder is physically present with their card, and is often used for “brick and mortar” or retail merchants, which will not work with Freshbooks. 

Using this type of account with FreshBooks will result in failed payments from Authorize.Net. More information between both types can be read here.

To check which type of Authorize.Net account you have, use these steps:

  1. Log into your Merchant Account here
  2. In the left menu, under Tools, if all you see is a Virtual Terminal link, then you have a Card Present account which is not compatible to use with FreshBooks;
  3. Or, if you see a plethora of other links like Upload Transactions, Recurring Billing, etc, you have a Card Not Present account which will work with Freshbooks. 

If you are set up as a Card Present account, you’ll need to reach out to your Authorize.Net merchant for help on how to get a Card Not Present account instead.


Note: To ensure your payments are processed correctly, we also recommend disabling Authorize.Net’s Advanced Fraud Detection Suite. Otherwise, the Advanced Fraud Detection Suite can cause credit card transactions to be incorrectly marked as paid before payment is processed.