Card Acquiring Service


The Card Acquiring Service, formerly referred to as the Plastic Card Network (PCN), was established in 1987 and is one of the collection mechanisms Fiscal Service manages for federal departments and agencies. All agencies are processing with our Financial Agent, Fifth Third Bank of Cincinnati, Ohio. The signing of an agreement with Fifth Third in August 2006 was the end result of an exhaustive search for a card processing bank that would be able to offer new functions to meet the needs of credit and debit card processing in the future.

Through the Card Acquiring Service, the government collects obligations via credit or debit card transactions. The objective of the service is to increase electronic collections received by the government, and process these transactions in an efficient, timely and cost-effective manner.

Payments include assessed fees, fines, and other monies due the federal government. Card acquiring services are provided at both domestic and international locations.

The government currently accepts the following cards from the public:

  • MasterCard®
  • Discover®
  • VISA®
  • American Express
  • Debit Cards (regional and national)

Most federal agencies that accept credit or debit cards for payment, including Visa and MasterCard branded products must do so through the Card Acquiring Service. The U.S. Postal Service, Army/Air Force Exchange Service, Navy Exchange, the Smithsonian, and certain other non-appropriated funds instrumentalities are authorized to obtain credit and debit card acquiring services on their own and thus do not participate in this program.


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Updated October 07, 2014

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