Upgrading Your POS System May Be Easier Than You Think

Fraud + Chargebacks Fraud Prevention By American Express January 22, 2015

Staying up to date on fraud prevention is easier than you might think, thanks to a simple upgrade process to chip-enabled point-of-sale (POS) systems.

More and more businesses are upgrading to chip-enabled POS systems, which can read the new chip cards that many customers are now carrying. And it’s an important upgrade; beginning October, 2015, card networks may no longer be held responsible for counterfeit charges made at businesses that do not have a chip-enabled point-of-sale system.

Many small business owners who have already made the upgrade appreciate how quick and simple the process is.

“Upgrading was quite easy,” says Robert Torigoe, manager of the Little Hair Shoppe. “We just went through our payment processor to update our system. The provider sent the new terminal within a week of talking with us. The setup was practically plug-and-play—not difficult at all. I got on the phone with the provider, entered in what they prompted me to, and it was very simple to activate.”

To upgrade, contact your payment processor or terminal provider and tell them you’d like to start accepting chip cards. They’ll provide you with a chip-enabled system and guide you through each step. Before you know it, your upgraded system will be up and running.

“Upgrading was an absolutely great experience,” says Dr. Sean Fein, owner of Starbase Optometry. “The chip-enabled system works well and it was a seamless changeover.”

Business owners like Dr. Fein are also enjoying the many benefits an upgraded system can deliver. In addition to adding an extra layer of security that reduces the risk of counterfeit fraud, the combination of chip cards and chip-enabled point-of-sale systems is the global standard for transactions, which is now being adopted in the U.S. . Many of the chip-enabled systems devices also allow for contactless payments, providing customers new ways to pay.

And the timing is right, since some security experts have predicted a rise in data breaches ahead of the upgrade, as the window is “closing for hackers to easily profit from point-of-sale attacks on brick-and-mortar retailers,” according to Experian’s 2015 Data Breach Industry Forecast.

“Most foreign cards have the chip, and we didn’t have the capability to read those before we upgraded, so that was really nice,” Torigoe adds. “And then we realized everyone here is also switching over, so we were glad to be prepared for that. There’s a feeling of added security both on the customer side and as a merchant. Customers are happy to have the capability to use their chip cards.”

Upgraded point-of-sale systems can deliver greater customer satisfaction and a smoother payment experience for a small business’s clientele.

“Now it’s easier and more convenient for my patients to pay,” Dr. Fein notes. “It’s great for them and it’s great for security.”

Moreover, for some business owners, upgrading is about more than fraud prevention and customer satisfaction—it’s a way to stay up-to-date on payment trends.

“Why wait?” Torigoe asks. “Make the upgrade now: it gives your clients more options with all the new chip cards being issued, and it means there are fewer chances for fraud, which makes people feel a bit more secure.”

“We wanted to make sure we stayed ahead of the curve in technology and in what we offered to our customers,” Dr. Fein says. “It gives us a competitive edge over companies that haven’t made the switch yet.”