Credit Card Processing in a Power Outage – Disaster Planning

Power outages have begun as a result of Blizzard Juno. While merchants and consumers should be home at this time, when the snow is done and people emerge to shop again, how will businesses manage accepting credit cards? The critical issues are power, telephone and internet access. Small to medium, and local retail businesses may especially lack the proper preparation.

“Sometimes a disaster is not the physical environment, but POS systems themselves,” according to Christine Speedy, a payments professional based in Florida. “A couple months ago, a client called because their 3rd party POS system went down and they were told it would be four hours before someone could bring a part to them. Luckily they had a plan B, which was to use our CenPOS mobile app with swiper that I’d recommended for hurricane season.

Backup internet access is critical:  Having multiple internet access methods is optimal so if one is down, there’s another option. For example, phone service may be down, but high speed cable internet up, or vice versa. It’s rare that phone, wireless phone and cable internet are all down at the same time.

Backup power:  How will you power devices, computers, lighting? A separate battery backup for computers can Power to recharge devices as well as power the store lights etc

Separate Point of Sale System (POS) from payments. If you can’t power your POS system, at least make sure you can accept credit card payments. Here’s some options to accept payments in a critical outage:

  • Call to a location in an unaffected area, and have someone key enter transactions into a virtual terminal. Have duplicate receipts ready for signature, and enter authorization code instead of imprinting card numbers.
  • Swipe on a mobile device
  • Call to a location in an unaffected area, and have someone send an einvoice to click and pay.
  • Text amount due and cell phone number of buyer to a location in an unaffected area, and have someone send an einvoice to click and pay.
  • Have an online pay page ready that you can refer customers to.

There’s lots of ways to be prepared, from keeping P2P encrypted card readers on hand to holding drills during slow times to test systems and readiness.

Paper backup plan: A backup plan in a computer is not very helpful if no one can turn the computer on to see the plan. Store the backup plan in notebooks in multiple locations, including off site.

Need a mobile reader as a backup? Ask about our P2P readers to ensure they’re safe and secure until you need them.

Retail store powered by OpenBravo ERP & CenPOS Launch Part 3

Part 2 of the ClearDrop and 3D Merchant Services “Pop-up store chronicles” announces the launch. On Monday, November 25, the merchant and parties on site decided it was best to take a moment to review operations and train employees instead of going live. On Tuesday, the store opened with about 80 customers in line and over 400 transactions completed that day.

In an interesting set up, the merchant is running OpenBravo with integrated CenPOS on Windows 8 tablets. The twist is that CenPOS is driving Equinox L5300 signature capture terminals instead of mobile card readers. The bump of the day was the cycle time for the call out to the payment application after a last minute change to Safari, which was not caching and thus required a load every time. By day two, this issue was eliminated with a switch back to another browser.

With the holidays and the grand opening of a new business on Black Friday, also using CenPOS with Mobile tablets running Windows 8 and driving L5200’s, I haven’t had time to update this story and provide a recap. I apologize and will have to get back to this later this month.

Introduction to CenPOS Automotive Enterprise Payment Solution Presentation

Payment innovation to improve the customer experience, including mobile payments and electronic invoices for express checkout. Inside look at how CenPOS technology choices impact F&I, Parts, Service and Operations. Must read for any dealer manager, owner, CFO and controller.


Every software company in the market says their innovative these days, but none of them offers the value to dealers and their customers like CenPOS.

  1. Introduction to CenPOS Automotive Enterprise Payment Solutions.  Let’s Improve the Customer Experience
  2. CenPOS At A Glance. CenPOS is an enterprise cloud payment platform that sits in front of your existing financial partners. When you make a change, It’s completely non-disruptive to operations. We simply update where route transactions are routed to.
  3. CenPOS Payment Innovation Strategy Drive merchant-centric value daily •? Increase operational efficiency •? Reduce financial expenses •? Improve customer satisfaction •? Optimize existing banking relationships
  4. Accept Payments on Mobile Devices like iPhone and Android Additional devices supported, not shown.
  5. Redefining Express checkout “Your Car is Ready” email Screenshot- landing page from text or email
  6. Commercial Account Efficiencies: Tokenization will aave about 42 keystrokes vs. fax credit card authorization form; empower customers to automatically update payment methods
  7. PCI Compliance Custom form automatically generated with each token created
  8. Automated Fee & Risk Management Graphic: Excerpt from actual dealer six month study
  9. Operations Benefits •? Standardization •? Replaces multiple payment channels- one source for reports, receipt retrieval, reconciliation •? Paperless signed receipts •? Invoice electronically- get paid faster •? Transparency– view and compare by employees, departments, and locations
  10. Proven Market Relevance with over 1,200 dealers using
  11. Popular Equipment: Signature Capture Terminals for CASHIER and F&I such as Hypercom/ Equinox L5200,  Check Scanners for CASHIER RDM EC7000/EC7000i, Epson TS1000.  Mobile Device Readers for SERVICE include ID TECH Shuttle, Two-Track Secure Mobile MagStripe Reader, iMag Pro Mobile Card. From Magtek, mobile devices include uDynamo, Magtek iDynamo.  Additional equipment supported, not shown
  12. CenPOS – No Risk Partnership, Scalable, Flexible, Free to try, Month to month, 24/7 support via phone and email
    14. Contact Don’t keep your customers waiting. Call right now to learn more Christine Speedy 954.942.0483

CenPOS is a merchant-centric, end-to-end payments engine that drives enterprise-class solutions for businesses, saving them time and money, while improving their customer engagement. CenPOS sits in front of a customers existing merchant account and replaces outdated desktop terminals, virtual terminals, and payment gateways. Contact Christine to add CenPOS to your dealership.

Are you in the automotive industry? If you’re a CenPOS customer please write a quick review below.

Going Paperless? Signature Capture Payment Solution & Variable Recurring Billing PART 1

Yes, there is a signature capture solution that also enables merchants to securely store payment information for variable recurring payments. A business associate contacted me yesterday and said calls to both TASQ and Verifone were fruitless, but eventually she was referred to CenPOS, and then called me, her CenPOS expert. In PART 1, I summarize the point of sale options.


We support signature capture via multi-lane and mobile device. Signature capture enables merchants to reduce paper storage, support eco-friendly initiatives, and easily retrieve receipts for customer care or dispute resolution.

Multi-lane devices include the lowest cost Equinox (Hypercom) L5200 to the Ingenico new ICS series, including the ISC250.  Device differences include multi-media capabilities to display advertising messages. MRSP averages in the $900-1000 range. ingenico isc250

We have mobile apps to accept payments on iPhone, iPad, and Android. The mobile card reader hardware recommended encrypts data at the swipe head with a CenPOS key. Card data can only be read by the mobile app, not the device. Card readers are available from under $50 MSRP for non-secured, to over $100 MSRP for Magtek readers with CenPOS key.


iphone payment solution

What are the big differences in multi-lane vs mobile signature capture solutions?

Pin debit is only available on multi-lane devices. There are no hardware specifications yet developed for pin debit on mobile devices at this writing. (Sidenote- any mobile solution requiring a pin today is not sending the transaction to the pin debit networks.)

  • MULTI-LANE WIN: CenPOS users will save some money with pin-debit, even in the post-Durbin regulated debit environment.
  • MULTI-LANE WIN: Pin debit has a 14 day dispute period vs 120 for signature capture
  • MULTI-LANE WIN: Customer familiarity, especially over crowd
  • MOBILE WIN: Mobile hardware is a fraction of the cost; cost effective to have spares on hand.
  • MOBILE WIN: When a mobile device breaks, simply move the swiper to a new device. When a multi-lane device breaks, it needs to be sent out for repair.
  • MOBILE WIN: Use anywhere, any time, including move from desk to desk or station to station.

CenPOS is a merchant-centric, end-to-end payments engine that drives enterprise-class solutions for businesses, saving them time and money, while improving their customer engagement. CenPOS sits in front of a customers existing merchant account and replaces outdated desktop terminals, virtual terminals, and payment gateways. Contact Christine to integrate with your Point of Sale (POS) system.

iPad credit card terminal: First Data Mobile Pay vs CenPOS

This mobile POS review compares 6 features for swiping credit cards via an iPad mobile app. The features are:

 FEATURE First Data Mobile Pay™first data mobile pay  CenPOS mobilecenpos mobile payment app
Credit card processing- is the app compatible with many merchant services companies or is it proprietary?  proprietary  universal
Can the app store or use tokens in the transaction process? Tokens replace sensitive payment data. By enabling tokens for repeat customers, merchants can gain insights into customers. No. yes
Scalability: is it one app = one account, or can a merchant access data by user, by location, etc. Is it part of a suite of solutions to reduce PCI burden? unclear  centralized control & reporting
Multi-channel: are all channels integrated with one reporting hub?  unclear  yes
Fee relief: does the app have any intelligence to help merchants manage the cost of accepting payments, including swipe vs. key entered?  no  yes
Data storage: How long is data retrievable for? Searchable and exportable data helps reduce reduce audit costs, creates efficiencies, and improves business insights ? 7 year minimum
Worthy Notes: CenPOS is a private cloud suite of solutions compatible with light integration options to other software.
Business model: User licenses per location SaaS, per merchant ID

The review is based on publicly available information at the time of this writing. Technology products can change rapidly and readers are encouraged to review respective web sites for the latest information.

There are 62 Point of Sale (POS) apps listed on Infinite Peripherals App Partners. Infinite Peripherals is a leading provider of POS hardware for Apple products including the iPad.

To keep the list manageable the topics list is relatively small so merchants can see at a glance key differences. Your blog author, Christine Speedy, sells the CenPOS private cloud suite of payment processing solutions, that includes a free mobile app, compatible with all Infinite Peripherals products. Although other apps are also available from our partners, usually they don’t stack up to CenPOS after a consultation.

For more comparisons, search for this subject title: iPad credit card terminal.

For CenPOS sales, please ask for Christine Speedy.