Tips for Preventing a Data Breach

Tips for Preventing a Data Breach

 

Tips for Preventing a Data Breach

 

When you think about data breaches, your mind probably jumps to the highly publicized incidents of companies like Target and Home Depot. Small business might think they don’t need to take security measures–but that’s not the case. Small business are as susceptible to data breaches as large corporations, and may actually be at greater risk.

Stephen Cobb, a senior security researcher at ESET, says that hackers like to target small businesses because they have more digital assets than a single customer, and not as many security measures put into place as a large enterprise. According to QSR magazine, small businesses like restaurants, are data-thief magnets because they process an abundance of credit cards and often use POS equipment.

Protect your small business with these data breach prevention tips from Chip and Terminal:

 

1. Be Proactive

  • Routinely check your POS systems to make sure they haven’t been tampered with.
  • Don’t wait for a problem to arise. Perform regular vulnerability assessments- once a week is advisable. These tests should be conducted on all systems associated with your network.

 

2. Make sure your credit card processing network is secure

  • Be sure adequate firewall and virus protection measures are put into place.
  • Avoid combining your network with your in-store free Wi-Fi. Make sure any open Wi- Fi networks your customers may use is on a separate network from the one where you process your credit cards.
    • If your devices are not properly installed, configured, and managed, you are taking on a large risk.

 

3. Hold your employees accountable

  • Train your employees on proper security measures. Creating a culture in your business that is more security-minded can help eliminate mistakes that may lead to a data breach. If your employees are knowledgeable and diligent in regards to your network’s security, they will be better able to notice atypical behavior.
  • Discuss with your employees the best way to optimize credit card security. Remind them that handling credit cards and physical cash is similar. There is a lot of responsibility that comes with handling money and information. Limiting how much employees handle credit cards out-of-sight can help prevent dishonest employees from stealing customer information.

 

4. Switch to EMV acceptance

  • EMV technology in the U.S. is catching up to the rest of the world after the 2015 EMV mandate. The chip that is embedded in EMV cards is encrypted and creates a new code every time the card is used to make a purchase, making the card unable to be replicated and more secure than a simple magnetic stripe card.
  • If a fraudulent charge has been made with an EMV enabled card, but a merchant doesn’t have the technology to process an EMV card, the merchant must accept the charge as a loss. Because of the liability shift it is critical that merchants invest in a processing system that accommodates EMV chips, whether they choose an EMV- enabled terminal or Point- of- Sale system.
  • The prevalence of EMV cards makes a data breach less likely because it is a lot harder for hackers to target individual cardholders as well as the businesses that accept them

 

If you would like more information on how to update your POS system and how to be more secure, including switching to EMV compliant technology, contact us at 800-317-1819!

Read MoreRead More
?

Julie’s Treasures and REVONU POS: Aye, the Perfect Match!

?

REVONU POS is making a huge impact on the POS community, and to talk about why, we asked Julie Nelson, owner of Julie’s Treasures in Minnesota, a retail consignment store,  what she thinks about her new REVONU POS system and COCARD.

COCARD: What made you choose COCARD for your payment processing?

Julie: COCARD was recommended to me by the previous owner.

COCARD: Was the previous owner already using REVONU?

Julie: No, he didn’t have a POS system to run the business. But I definitely wanted to utilize one. The previous owner mentioned that COCARD had POS systems available and I really liked REVONU.

COCARD: So it seems like REVONU has made your business easier to manage! Could you give me some examples as to how REVONU has improved the operation of your business?

Julie: REVONU has made a positive difference! After getting REVONU, it has been easier to keep track of sales as it can sometimes be difficult to keep track of consignors. We also have two different shipping services that are out of the office, so we rely on REVONU to keep those organized. It is very important that we keep track of who we are selling to and who to pay!

COCARD: Would you say REVONU does a good job at catering to a retail business, such as Julie’s Treasures?

Julie: Yes

COCARD: Is it relatively easy for you to keep your inventory organized using REVONU?

Julie: Yes

COCARD: If you could see one feature be added/changed to REVONU what would that be?

Julie: Honestly, I haven’t encountered any issues!

COCARD: What is your favorite aspect of REVONU?

Julie: My favorite aspects are the sales tracking and the back office management options as well has being able to get support for REVONU and my merchant services account in one place with one call!

COCARD:  Thank you Julie for taking the time to speak with us today!  

Is REVONU POS right for your business?  Give us a call to set up a demo, we love to show it off!  800-318-1819

 

 

 

Read MoreRead More
Small REVONU cartoon

Pssst! Did You Know That COCARD Has a Live Chat?

REVONU cartoon character right

 

Do you have any burning questions? Not feeling like picking up the phone? Would you like some more information about credit card processing, POS systems or have a question about your merchant account with COCARD? Then chat away!

I’m REVONU your POS system pal, and I’m here to tell you about our brand new live chat feature. It’s conveniently located on the bottom right corner of the screen on our website, www.cocard.info.

Look in the right hand corner of your screen right now, click on the blue box and one of our fanatical support members will answer any questions you may have, so don’t hesitate to chat us! Hope to talk to you soon!

Read MoreRead More
Cartoon anthropomorphic EMV enabled terminal smiling

What You Need to Know About Mobile Payments

Cartoon anthropomorphic EMV enabled terminal smiling

Terminal talks about mobile payments!

Like any new technology, mobile payments might seem a bit complicated. Don’t worry, we’re covering what you need to know about the latest mobile payment technologies— without all the technical jargon.

 How do mobile payments work?

Apple Pay and Android Pay

 Apple and Android Pay rely on NFC technology. NFC stands for “Near Field Communication,” as in the phone and terminal must be near each other to work. Both the phone and the terminal must have NFC chips.

Samsung Pay

Samsung Pay is different than Apple and Android pay because it involves MST technology. MST stands for “Magnetic Secure Transmission” and interacts with a terminal just like the magnetic strip on your card.

Both of these technologies allow your phone to internally store your payment info and to communicate with a terminal in order to authorize the transaction.

Are mobile payment technologies safe?

Yes. In general, today’s mobile payments are secure. Your card information is encrypted in your phone to combat fraudsters. Essentially, your phone holds a virtual card—a decoy that you use to make payments. Unlike a physical card, your financial information (i.e. your name and card number) is not directly used.

Here’s a few tips to make your mobile wallet even more secure:

  1. Make sure you have a passcode on your phone. If your phone gets lost or stolen, it will be more difficult for someone to use your phone to make payments with your card.
  2. Set your phone up to be able to be turned off from anywhere in the event your phone has been lost or stolen.
  3. Monitor your card statements for any fraudulent charges. If you see anything suspicious, call your bank.

Apple and Samsung Pay also utilize fingerprint verification (biometrics) in order to access your chosen payment.

Comparing Mobile Payment Apps

  • Apple Pay
  • Introduced 2014
  • One of the first mobile payment options to utilize NFC technology in phones
  • Works with iPhone models 6 and newer
  • Works with wearables (Apple Watch)
  • Accepts most Visa, MasterCard and most large organizations
  • Larger banks (like Bank of America) support Apple Pay, but support varies across smaller regional banks
  • Android Pay
    • Phone must be supported by NFC, which is available in newer Android models
    • Utilizes a downloadable app
    • Works on any compatible smartphone
    • Currently supported by fewer banks than Apple Pay

Apple and Android Pay are not yet widely accepted in stores due to the fact that this technology is relatively unknown to consumers.

  • Samsung Pay:
  • Works with newest Samsung phones like the Galaxy S7
  • Uses MST technology to mimic the magnetic strip on a card
  • Works by hovering your phone over any terminal
  • Use is not restricted to NFC enabled terminals
  • Does not work (due to weak signal strength) if your card has to be inserted into the terminal, like at a gas station

 

Have more questions about mobile payments, or wireless terminals, our customer services representatives will be happy to help- just call us at 1(800)317- 1819!

 

Read MoreRead More

REVONU POS and Holy Cross Monastery: a Match Made in Heaven!

Brother Will working in the shop with REVONU POS

Brother Will working in the shop with REVONU POS

While COCARD’s REVONU POS is already well known for powering payments at restaurants, salons, and retail establishments, it also helps Holy Cross Monastery manage their gift shop inventory, payments and book sales.

Read what Holy Cross Monastery’s Brother Scott has to say about REVONU POS and COCARD.

COCARD: First, what is your primary use for REVONU POS?

Brother Scott: Our system is in the gift shop where we sell a mixture of books, religious gifts, candy bars and snacks.

 

COCARD: What made your monastery choose REVONU POS for your payment processing?

Brother Scott: We have been working with COCARD for a while, primarily because the previous POS system we were using had recommended COCARD as a merchant services provider. Also, when EMV came about we were looking at how to accommodate that. We had the option to stay with a previous system or change to what COCARD was recommending. COCARD’s support had always been quite good so we felt confident in going with their recommendation, which was REVONU POS.

 

COCARD: How has REVONU POS improved the operation of your business?

Brother Scott: The previous software we used had been minimally updated since the 90’s. So, now that we have been able to use the newer technology, particularly the cloud based software to access the back office from anywhere, our store has been running a lot smoother.

 

COCARD: So you would say that REVONU POS has made your business run easier and more efficiently?

Brother Scott: Yes! Especially because COCARD’s customer service has been so reliable and has made converting to REVONU POS a smooth process.

 

COCARD: What is your favorite aspect of REVONU POS?

Brother Scott: Again, the newer technology and back office cloud integration is great! Also the staff in the store really like the ease of the touch- screen functions on the terminal.

If you think that your business could benefit from adopting a REVONU point of sale terminal, like Holy Cross Monastery does, call COCARD today at 1(800)317- 1819!

Read MoreRead More
QR Code for COCARD merchant services education center

4 Unexpected Uses for QR Codes

QR Code for COCARD merchant services education center

A few short years ago, QR (Quick Response) codes seemed poised to reach smartphone levels of popularity. Advertisers, merchants and consumers had various reasons to be excited about this technology’s potential. In perfect application, QR drives traffic to websites, collects or processes simple, quick in-store or online payments or provides product info in a flash.

Despite its potential, QR has mostly faded from commercial limelight—codes are often present, but not visible.

Issues with QR codes as a tool for commerce are obvious. It’s clunky; users must download an app to scan the code, manually scan the code and then wait for whatever is linked to the code to display. Considering the information a QR code will provide is not always—or even often—given, it makes sense that consumers would skip scanning altogether.

QR shouldn’t be written off just yet, but repurposed.  Here’s a look at some recent QR projects breathing new life into this tech:

Virtual Reality.

Google Cardboard, aka the working-man’s Oculus Rift, doesn’t just save babies’ lives (seriously!) Once you scan the QR code on the side of the viewer, insert your phone for an immersive, HD experience of locations from Stonehenge and the Palace of Versailles, to the Moon! Developers and virtual reality enthusiasts are constantly updating the app with new locations and experiences.

In this application, the QR code allows you to quickly sync the phone and the app.

In Memoriam

QR is reaching wider audiences as an educational tool. Graveyards, historical sites and museums are just some examples of organizations using QR code technology. Integrating QR codes with headstones provides a unique way to preserve biographical information for future generations. QR codes have been added to some museums, giving patrons more background on an exhibit. Other uses include providing audio tours and translation options.

 Lost Pets

Losing a pet can be devastating and phone pole photos only reach a limited radius. QR codes are being used to simplify finding a lost pet. Q-Tag is a GPS-based QR code system where each pet has a customized profile. If they’re lost, a person who finds them can scan their code with their phone to pull up the owner’s contact details.

Saving Lives

In the medical field, every second matters. QR is being used to convey a patient’s important medical history to paramedics, even if they are unconscious. My QR Life Codes creates a personalized QR code applied bracelets or cards.

Up Next: In our ever-evolving technology landscape new ways to interact with our world are constantly emerging. QR codes are being applied in novel ways and NFC  (Near Field Communication), aka Apple Pay, Google Wallet, Samsung Pay and Android Pay, is the latest development in payment processing. NFC excels where QR failed: it is truly instant and convenient. Widespread consumer adoption is making slow—but steady!—progress. Most new phones come pre-installed with NFC capabilities and the EMV Compliance Mandate means an increase in EMV cards, likely encouraging the upward trend.

Visit our education center to learn more about EMV and the future of payment processing

Read MoreRead More