Security professionals are admitting that today, when you make a purchase, the way you make that purchase — in person, over the phone, online — can determine just how secure your transaction will be.
“One in three data breach victims suffered identity fraud last year, meaning they experienced countless hours on the phone filing identity theft reports, reporting errors to businesses, talking to debt collectors and the like,” says Joe Ross, President and co-founder of CSID, in a Huffingtonpost.com post.
As the only full-service point of sale provider — from software development to franchise incubator to ongoing support — part of Sintel’s commitment to our customers and industry is to share ideas and information. Whether you’re a first-time franchise hopeful, a small business owner or an established chain, it’s always smart to stay on top of the latest point of sale security best practices to achieve financial success.
Ross’s post, “Payments 101: How To Make Shopping More Secure,” takes a closer look at what secure — or insecure — payment options are available today:
Magstripe cards are a type of card that stores and transfers data within a magnetic stripe. Common in the United States, we’re all familiar with seeing the stripes on credit cards, debit cards, public transportation cards and even office ID cards. Typically, users must provide their signature at the end of a payment.
– Security professionals deem the magstripe card form of payment as less secure than EMV (Europay, MasterCard, Visa), because it stores cardholder account information within the “tracks” on the magnetic stripe.
– Cyber criminals can use point of sale malware to scrape a business’s memory for this track data and then use that data to clone other cards.
EMV (Europay, MasterCard, Visa), or Chip and PIN cards are common in European countries, hence “Europay” in the acronym.
– EMV cards are often called IC cards, or “chip cards,” because a computer chip is embedded in the card and associated with a user-supplied PIN.
– EMV cards are seen as a global standard for payment cards because of their secure nature.
– The United States is slowly moving towards adopting these types of cards into the mainstream.
– Because EMV cards create a unique record for every transaction, cyber criminals cannot extract information from EMV cards during a breach using POS malware. Basically, even if a cyber criminal managed to extract the one-time unique transaction code, they would be unable to use that code for future purchases.
CNP Transactions are typically made over the phone or Internet, when a physical card is not presented to the merchant. CNP stands for “Card Not Present.”
– CNP Transactions are considered highly insecure and can be major sources of credit card fraud, since it’s difficult for merchants to authorize the user’s identity.
Contactless Payments are a relatively new kind of payment that uses radio frequency for transactions.
– Users wave a card, device or fob over a point of sale system to make their purchase.
– Although contactless payments are convenient for users, they can be insecure because cyber criminals can use malware, or even “skimming,” as a method of intercepting the card data.
Ross notes that while the methods of payment available are often decided by a bank or merchant location, it is important to be aware of the risks associated with each method so that one can make the decision to shop securely as often as possible. Ross also advises to keep tabs on when certain more-secure methods of payment become available, and consider if they are right for future transactions.
Read the full Huffingtonpost.com post here.
For more insights into point of sale (POS) security, check out our related posts, Criminals Hit Their Target 40 Million Cards Affected, Target Hack Claims Its Final Victim, U.S., Canada and Others Hit By POS Infections, PF Chang’s China Bistro Gets Targeted, Safer Consumer Transactions May Be In The Cards, and EMV Technology Chips Away at Credit Card Fraud.
Just as we share our vast point of sale experience and expertise with startup owners in order to help them make the best decisions from the very beginning, we at Sintel Systems are happy to share articles, advice and commentary about retail point of sale and security.
Whether you’re a first-time franchise hopeful, a small business owner or an established chain, it’s imperative to stay on top of the latest point of sale best security practices to achieve financial success.
If you are interested in learning more about Sintel’s point of sale systems and how our knowledge and support can impact your future success, call us for a complimentary phone consultation.
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