Cloud-Based POS Systems Offer Greater Security

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Earlier this month, Apriva, a provider of wireless transactions, gateway services, and secure information solutions, announced a partnership with POS on Cloud, a cloud-based point-of-sale technology for the restaurant and retail industries.

Their partnership speaks to a larger movement building in the restaurant industry of operators seeking more secure, cloud-based point-of-sale options that allow for encryption of credit card data, more flexibility in hardware deployment and processor relationships, and mobile responsiveness.

These needs are particularly crucial as the October deadline approaches for credit card acquirers and processors to comply with Europay, Mastercard, and Visa (EMV) standards. The chip-and-pin cards, which require insertion of the card into a terminal throughout the entire transaction, represent a shift away from magnetic-stripe credit cards that pose a greater security risk. While merchants are not required to comply with the new standards, they will become liable for fraudulent purchases if they choose not to meet the EMV standards.

Credit card encryption that doesn't save credit card data on servers is thus a major factor in a restaurant’s current POS environment that could lead operators to think toward a cloud POS solution, says Justin Passalaqua, director of sales and integration services at Apriva.

"[With a cloud-based POS] there is no delivered software or server sitting at the POS where card data is stored," Passalaqua explains. "It's all done in the cloud, and that really limits the scope of liability and the chance of a credit card breach, because [a thief] can't get to the data; it's not there."

Another advantage with a cloud-based POS system is the ability to flex between payment processors. POS on Cloud and Apriva, for example, can support more than 35 processors on their back end.

"So, if a restaurant needs to speak to Chase payments or Wells Fargo, it doesn't matter on our end; we can quickly switch that and allow them to process," Passalaqua says. "The flexibility is easy for the restaurants because they don't have to do any additional work. With one integration [from POS on Cloud to Apriva], they can talk to anyone in the payment network."

A couple of other benefits of cloud-based POS solutions Passalaqua points out: The cloud point-of-sale system provides step-by-step training upon first use, and the digital nature of the cloud means support is readily and quickly available; Passalaqua says there's no need to call someone to come out and provide extra training or make changes to the system.

Finally, a restaurant owner has the ability to log in remotely and access a cloud POS system, whether that's to update software, add a new menu item, revise a price, manage inventory, or run a loyalty campaign. Often, the restaurant can push the changes to all POS systems within the store and to multi-unit locations, as well.

The remote access ties into mobile POS, an emerging market that is already skyrocketing, according to Passalaqua, encompassing everything from pay-at-the-table solutions to cloud-based systems.

The collaboration with POS on Cloud is one of Apriva's first partnerships in its recently formed Integration Services division, which creates new methods for payment applications and software, such as allowing restaurants to integrate directly to its gateway for payment processing. With POS on Cloud, Apriva, which also has offerings for various types of POS solutions in the market, now has a fully integrated payment software capable of sending direct payment transactions to its gateway.

By Sonya Chudgar


Great Article. That Justin Passalaqua guy seems to really know his stuff. Would be interested to see the growth in this and if the cloud can be used for other technologies inside a business.

I agree. The cloud seems to be the wave of the future. Or is it the particle?

At best, this is a biased and uninformed article. EVM standards and securities are the same for server based POS systems as the are with Cloud based systems. Cloud based systems are hacked just as easily and often as server based systems.

Personally, I work for a cloud-based POS developer (NorthStar Order Entry), we utilize E2E encryption with our service. This technology effectively removes the POS system from the payment process and the hardware is where the security takes place. At this point, E2E encryption is the most secure payment security option. EMV won't protect from hackers, just physical card fraud. Once it's adopted, that is... and we know how long that could take.

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