Strategies to reduce risk of large chargebacks

If a startups' core business is a service broker on behalf of others whom are providing some service, and they are receiving money by credit card and then paying the other party by ACH, what strategies can you use to reduce risk? Is there a good resource or guide on this aspect? For purposes of this conversation assume a model similar to how AirBNB works. $ 200-300 bookings collected via CC, then when the service is paid by startup after the booking service is provided. The actual service provider gets their payment to their bank directly, minus some sort of booking commission fee that is transparent to the consumer; or, instead an explicit service fee is added and explicitly paid by the consumer.

A potential concern for fraud for example would be someone creating a totally fake service provider and the validation done doesn't catch that, churning money out of a stolen credit card, then getting paid to that fake provider, and then the card gets charged back 3 weeks after. Additionally–how do you scale worldwide in this scenario… or do you not?

A few things that come to mind would be evaluating the risk profile of the consumer/provider either manually or w/ something like Maxmind; perhaps holding back money for payment to the provider on some schedule until both parties are considered not new. Or not getting involved as a party to the transaction, but having the payments go one party to the other, and the provider pays a larger monthly membership fee instead. I'm specifically trying to not do that though for competitive reasons. And in terms of chargeback risk/fraud (/legal risk?), are there pros/cons to taking a service commission out transparently when paying the service provider vs giving the provider the full amount but charging the consumer a service fee?

submitted by /u/danekan
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