Account Name Inquiry FAQ

ANI Frequently Asked Questions for Developers

About ANI & Names

What does it check?

  1. Client can send a cardholder’s first, middle, and last name. Last name is required.
  2. This information is sent to Visa and the issuer.
  3. Name will be compared to the legal name the issuer has on record for that PAN.
    1. Matching all names on file for that PAN → If multiple people have the same PAN, if the person has multiple legal names (e.g. maiden name) on file, etc.
    2. Should return the “closest” match result.

When should I check?

ANI is performed as part of an Query Card Request. It can be performed before a transaction, or before adding a card on file. Which of these two options works for the client and how often the client should perform ANI, is on a case by case basis.

How should I check?

  1. Client can send a cardholder’s first, middle, and last name. Last name is required.
  2. Client would use the Query Card API, and add a ANI flag to request ANI.

What name is checked by ANI?

Account Name Inquiry compares the name sent by the merchant with the name held on file by the issuing bank. This is usually defined as the legal name. Specifically the primary name the issuer holds against the card account, used in creation of the card account, and is used in direct correspondence with the cardholder

Please note that the issuer will have normally carried out due diligence checks on the individual’s identity on account creation.

The issuer might have more than one name for a card account, such as a maiden name, other preferred names, or secondary account holders. ANI is supposed to check the different names, and the best match result is returned.

What alphabets are supported in ANI?

Account Name Inquiry service uses the Extended Binary Coded Decimal Interchange Code (EBCDIC), 8-bit. ANI supports the 26-characters (graphemes) of the ISO basic Latin alphabet (or Roman alphabet), plus Diacritic extensions (glyphs) such as accents, superscript curls and two dots, for example.

Visa supports:

  • 35 characters maximum for each name (First/Middle/Last)
  • Roman and special characters only

Are suffixes or prefixes supported?

No suffixes (“III”, “jr”, etc.) or prefixes (“Dr.”, etc.) are supported at this time.

Please do not pass in suffix in the API, and make sure your firstName and lastName do not include a prefix or a suffix. If they do, please remove them before passing them in the API.

Are nicknames supported?

ANI requires cardholder legal name, not their nickname.

What about shortened names?

Shortened names: “Rob” vs “Robert” would also be a nickname, but might yield a partial match.

What if I only have one of the customer’s names?

Last name is required for ANI, but you should try to provide all three names every time.

What if multiple people share the same account?

ANI performs a match against all of the names on the account.

Do I receive the name?

No, ANI does not disclose the name on the account to originators or merchants.


What card brands are supported?

At this time, only Visa cards are supported for Account Name Inquiry services.

Is ANI available in all regions?

ANI is mandated and effective for issuers in the US and Canada and UK from 14th October 2023. Until ANI is supported by issuers in other countries, ANI match responses will mostly only be returned for domestic and international-inbound inquiries on card accounts issued in the US, Canada and UK.

Again, for Visa cards only.


Does ANI support non-reloadable prepaid products or to business and corporate cards?

Account Name Inquiry does not support business name and ANI is not supported on business, commercial or non-reloadable Prepaid where there is no name associated to the account. Merchant should not negatively regard the AV response when name match yields “not supported’ or ‘not performed’

Risk, Fraud, and Compliance-Related

Is cardholder consent required for ANI?

TabaPay Clients are responsible for ensuring they have provided necessary notices and obtained required cardholder consent, as applicable, and for establishing an appropriate lawful basis for the disclosure of cardholder name data for ANI.

Does ANI perform sanction screening?

No. ANI does not perform sanction screening. Refer to TabaPay's OFAC process for sanction screening.

Is there liability protection with ANI use?

There is currently no liability benefit associated with ANI use. ANI is an optional service for TabaPay Clients and assists them in making more informed decisions on subsequent transactions. TabaPay does not stipulate how the ANI result should be used, nor does it advise any specific course of action based on ANI match results. TabaPay is not responsible for, and disclaims all liability with respect to, ANI results and their use.


What is the cost of performing an ANI?

Please contact your account representative at TabaPay or by emailing [email protected] for more information.

What are the billable events for ANI?

Account Name Inquiry uses the Visa Account Verification Service, this means that every ANI request will be billed as an AVS request, with an additional charge for any matches performed. This means that if you request ANI, you will always see an AVS billable event, but will only pay the additional charge for ANI when ANI performs a match (failed, partial, successful, etc.)

For these reason, it might be more cost effective to use AVS + ANI in every request by passing the customer's address and AVS/ANI flags.


Non-Visa card

Since Visa is the only network with an ANI service at this time, if you make an ANI only request to TabaPay for a non-Visa card we will only return the standard query card response.


What APIs support ANI?

ANI is performed in the Query Card API. Please look at the Card Query reference for more information.

Can I use ANI with AVS?

Yes, you can send address, CVV2, and Name in the same Card Query API request. Please check the Card Query API reference page for more information on how to perform ANI + AVS together.

Can I use ANI without AVS?

Yes, you can send a Card Query API request with just the name. Please check the Card Query API reference page for more information on how to perform ANI by itself.

Please note: Account Verification is performed as part of ANI on Visa cards. This means that for Visa cards, you will receive information about the account being opened, etc. You will also be charged for the account verification even if ANI is not supported by the issuer. This is only true for Visa branded cards. All other brands will not perform an account verification unless you explicitly request AVS.