Visa U.S.A. and the Internet subsidiary of the Better Business Bureau, BBBOnLine, announced a two-year agreement Tuesday to develop joint programs meant to heighten the security and privacy of online transactions.

Citing "a misconception in the marketplace that fraud is rampant online," Carl Pascarella, president and chief executive officer of Visa U.S.A., said the combined brand value of the partnership should bolster consumer confidence in e-commerce. "What we have now is the most trusted name in payments getting together with the most trusted consumer business association," he said.

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