Online-payment gateway company Ezic Inc. says a new feature it is offering helps merchants comply with a MasterCard Worldwide rule that prohibits merchants from exchanging information about a cardholder when the consumer buys something from a second merchant in a sale called cross-selling. A cross-sale is the selling of an affiliate partner's product or service to an existing customer, a spokesperson for Vernon Hills, Ill.-based Ezic says. "Merchants often establish partnerships with other merchants in which they offer the affiliate's similar product or service for sale on their own site at the time of the original purchase," the spokesperson tells CardLine. Ezic's new gateway feature enables merchants to restrict cross-sale transactions to block an affiliate's transactions involving a MasterCard-branded card. Card-brand rules require each merchant to have separate merchant accounts, which prohibits merchants from sharing a single account. Merchants could face MasterCard fines of up to $50,000 per violation and have their merchant accounts closed if found to be cross-selling, Ezic says.