Is it OK for sales reps to collect credit card data?

secure credit card salesman token biulling

If salespeople accept credit cards, instead of writing down credit card data on paper, sales should immediately process the transaction or enter sensitive payment data into a secure payment portal to encrypt and tokenize for future use.

What’s the best practice for sales reps to collect credit card data? This question primarily pertains to business to business companies, where billing may be done later by the credit or finance department. The initial sale, and possibly future sales, requires a credit card. 

Option 1: Eliminate sales from ever touching credit card data. This can be achieved by:

  • Creating an online payment page. The customer self-creates an account and manages their payment data, including whether they want to store it.
  • Using a ‘request for payment‘ service. This is a slimmed down version of electronic bill presentment and payment ( or EBPP Lite). The user enters whatever customer data management requires, including email or mobile number, invoice number, and amount due. The customer immediately receives a link to a unique secure URL to make the payment.
  • EBPP – there are multiple methods to send an electronic invoice for the customer pay, both integrated and non-integrated. This may be less desirable for new customers

Option 2: If the salesperson physically meets with the customer, use an enterprise mobile payment solution to include card reader, point to point encryption, tokenization, and data management for both card present and card not present transactions.

It’s much harder for merchants to maintain PCI compliance while mitigating risk of losses due to disputes or fraud, when sales uses alternative methods, including paper authorization forms.

Interchange Plus Pricing- in 60 seconds learn if you REALLY have wholesale or tiered pricing

Credit card processing is complicated. It doesn’t matter how good your deal is if you don’t have the best base price plan to start with. Your merchant statement has the critical evidence of whether or not you are even in the game, including qualifying for low regulated debit interchange rates (Durbin Amendment, part of Dodd-Frank).

credit card processing pricing

Above image is example of one type of credit card processing rate structures.

This video uses ZOOM so it is not necessary to blow it up.

About the author: Christine specializes in providing merchants with innovative technology to manage the cost of accepting credit cards, without changing merchant accounts.  With a primary focus on “card not present” payment processing solutions for mid-size companies, including manufacturers and wholesale distributors,  merchants improve PCI Compliance and streamline the payment experience for both their company and their customers. It’s fast, easy to use, and requires no capital investment to implement. For sales call Christine at 954-942-0483 or click here for more information.

Dealer Cloud Payment Solution- 3 features users will never give up

Dealerships that try CenPOS payment technology stay customers for life. Here’s three features CenPOS users will never give up, and that competitors can’t duplicate:

  1. Interchange optimization– CenPOS removes people and outdated terminals from impacting the cost of accepting credit cards. Other cloud solutions have the same intelligence as old dial up terminals- NONE. CenPOS dynamically makes decisions in seconds based on risk and other merchant defined rules.
  2. Token billing with online payments– CenPOS replaces fax credit card authorization forms and telephone orders. I don’t care what HQ policies are, every dealer has this going on whether upper management knows it or not; sometimes only accounting has permission to accept them but that’s stiil too many people. In either case, it’s a poor business practice. Making it easier for your customers to pay, while mitigating risks, can make all the difference whether a customer chooses to do business with you or not. CenPOS offers two secure online payment solutions. No employees ever have access to payment data- no one, ever. No payment data touches your servers, ever.
  3. Reporting– whether one location or many, CenPOS creates numerous back office efficiencies, including reconciliation, transaction research, electronic receipt retrieval, and audit trails are just a few.
  4. Bonus- Mobile payments- not quite a necessity for everyone yet, but there has been growing demand, especially in service departments. Why is CenPOS different? There is no additional effort needed to implement or for reconciliation. User permissions carry across all points of payment acceptance per rules merchants set up, and all the other benefits of CenPOS extend to mobile.

Dealer Brochure- CenPOS  overview

automotive dealer case study infographic cloud payments

automotive dealer case study infographic

CenPOS products include:

  • Virtual Terminal
  • Online payments
  • Pre-filled Request for Payment (electronic bill presentment & payment or EBPP)
  • Dashboard- exeuctive insights
  • Recurring Billing- installment and scheduled payments
  • Token billing- charge any amount to stored payment method
  • Mobile apps – Droid, iPad, iPhone

About CenPOS: CenPOS is an innovative payment processing network that streamlines the payment experience for both merchants and customers. It’s multi-channel support and SaaS model, has catapulted a shift in payment technology adoption in a variety of industries. CenPOS is fast, easy to use, and requires no capital investment to implement. For CenPOS sales call Christine at 954-942-0483 or click here for more information.

Video Training: How to replace credit card authorization forms

In this training video, I show how to securely store credit card data so that no one can ever see it again. It’s virtually impossible to prove Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards (PCI DSS) Compliance if storing credit card authorization forms with full card data. This solution can significantly increase boost PCI Compliance and reduce losses due to disputes and resulting chargebacks.

The positive card verification checkbox is used to submit a zero dollar authorization transaction. This validates all rules in the merchant administration and on a user basis. For example, if rules require an address, zip code, and cvv security code verification, the items will be validated with the card issuer. The receipt is the merchant record of proof that the card issuer passed the verification.

Optionally send the repeat sale credit card charge form to your customer. Have the customer sign and send it back. This replaces credit card authorization forms that have full card data.

TIP: Include a cancellation and refund policy on all invoices, as required for all card not present transactions per card acceptance guidelines.

CenPOS works with your existing processor, and is fast, easy, and requires no capital investment to implement. Call Christine Speedy in sales 954-942-0483 or click here for more information.

Credit card authorization form template

Most merchants have printable authorization forms that don’t comply with the basic requirements to protect against disputes or don’t comply with Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards (PCI Compliance) guidelines.
Download this Credit card authorization form template and modify as you wish.


This form contains language suitable for businesses where all of these elements apply:

  • business to business
  • card not present – phone, fax, email, or other order (not ecommerce)
  • repeat customers with sales of variable amounts; need to bill customers on an occasional or regular basis for varying purchases
  • sensitive card data is stored via a PCI compliant solution that replaces card data with a ‘token’ ; the token is linked used to charge the card

Card Acceptance Guidelines for Visa Merchants

You won’t find a “fax authorization form” in the guidelines, however, there is much information about receipt requirements.

Do you want to empower your customers to pay 24/7 via a secure pay online page? Would you like to reduce scope for PCI Compliance?

Would you to eliminate fax authorization forms that expose card data?   Contact Christine Speedy at 954-942-0483.