Industry News


A major internet service organization recently found itself the victim of a cyber security breach regarding financial data.

The company fell prey to hackers by a spear-phishing attack. Spear phishing is the attempt to get corporate information by sending an e-mail message that appears legitimate. The fraudulent message sometimes asks the recipient to click on a link to verify information. Instead, that link can download spyware, Trojan horses, or malware. That’s what was believed to have happened in the breach; employees clicked on links in an e-mail that apparently led to the installation of malware.

Besides giving the hackers access to e-mail, the scam also compromised content management systems, internal communication systems, and the company’s data system for managing domains. Security enhancements implemented months ago, by the firm, likely limited the unauthorized access sought by the hackers.

While this company will no doubt be more vigilant guarding against future spear phishing scams, there’s a lesson here that businesses of any size and type can impart to their own employees: Don’t click on links in e-mails that looks suspicious, particularly if the message is asking for information.  To learn more, contact us here at ProPay.

The year 2015 is already becoming known for cyber security breaches regarding financial data with at least two major breaches happening in quick succession in the new year. Here’s some information about the breaches including how they could’ve been potentially avoided.

A Bitcoin company was  recently reported as compromised on January 4th. The breach was actually bad enough that the company had to stop all business immediately, which no doubt made them lose out on many potential customers.

It’s looking like the problem occurred largely because of an inside job where an employee was stealing funds from customers. One way this could’ve been potentially prevented is if all customer data was stored elsewhere by only taking funds through a payment processing service.

That way, not even employees on the inside have access to customer data, so nothing can be stolen.

A well-known investment bank recently reported that one of their employees potentially stole records of 350,000 bank clients. The employee apparently even posted 900 of these online, though it is still unclear if the employee’s breach was responsible for that part or not. The theft apparently involved something known as “Speedcoins” which is a currency similar to Bitcoin.

The breach underlines the importance of isolating important information away from where employees can access it, preferably through the use of a third-party. If employees have limited access to customer information, then the risk of customer data theft is greatly diminished.

For more information about keeping financial data safe from outsiders and insiders alike, please contact us here at ProPay.

In the world of merchandise processing, there are two different types of transaction processing: swiping and keying. With the constant accessibility to mobile devices such as tablets, smartphones, and laptops more and more merchants are using swiping, but why? In order to fully understand why more merchants are swiping cards versus keying them in, let’s take a look at the difference between swiping and keying credit cards.

Swiping vs. Keying Credit Cards

The difference between swiping credit cards and keying them in is pretty self explanatory, when swiping you have to have the card present and it typically requires either a mobile device with a swipe adapter such as ProPay’s JAK, or a computer/register with an internet connection. Whereas when you key a credit card in, merchants have to hand enter every card number and the credit card doesn’t actually have to be present. So, why are more merchants avoiding keying credit cards? Three reasons: fraud, savings, and convenience.

Fraud Rates

The biggest reason not to key in credit cards is plain and simple: fraud. Because merchants don’t actually have to have the credit card present with keyed payments, the chances of fraudulent transactions are a lot higher. Because most thieves steal credit card numbers instead of the card itself and then make by-phone or online orders, the card itself is never seen. Avoid these types of no-swipe fraudulent transactions altogether and only allow customers to pay for merchandise when they have the card present.

Savings

Because there is a higher fraud rate for credit cards that are being keyed in, credit card processors charge a higher rate for keyed transactions compared to swiped transactions, in order to protect themselves against any false transactions. How much more money do they charge? About .5% more per transaction. For example, credit card processors typically charge around 3.5% for keyed transactions, whereas ProPay only charges 2.29% for keyed transactions.

Convenience

Have you ever had to hand enter someone’s credit card only to realize you misentered one number and you have to start all over? With swiping, you never have to worry about that problem again. Also, you can swipe anywhere, at anytime—giving you the freedom and mobility your business needs in order to stay prevalent in this economy.

To learn more about swiped rates visit ProPay online.

The recent hack of a major entertainment company demonstrates the weaknesses still existing in corporations, both large and small. The hackers, according to recent news, rendered the company “unable to process payments, leading to… canceled film shoots…”

If you think that you’re safe, think again! According to another news article, “the recent high-profile cyber security breach risks unleashing a wave of copycat attacks after the entertainment company showed the impact cyber criminals could have when the [company] canceled the release of [its movie].” Other cyber criminals have the potential to see that they could have a powerful influence on businesses and become brazen with their attacks. The article states that small and large entertainment-related companies are calling cyber security experts, terrified and willing to pull any and all movies that hackers may deem offensive – all in hopes that they are spared from cyber attacks.

During these turbulent cyber security times, you should choose a cyber secure payment processor. ProPay is always on top of the latest cyber security measures. Contact us today to learn more!

Being a merchant nowadays is very challenging – not only do you have to worry about the rebound from our recent economic recession – you also have to now worry about cyber security. According to Tech Crunch, more and more retailers are succumbing to hackers.

Many retailers, including major clothing, home-improvement, grocery, and restaurant chains  have been attacked and successfully breached. “[one retailer] saw 56 million accounts compromised!” The article states that a major reason why most retailers are being breached is because they haven’t converted from mag stripe card readers to more up-to-date systems like chip and PIN. If there’s a takeaway to this: if you have a brick and mortar store – you should update your system to avoid any breaches. Keep in mind that whether it’s your payment processor or you that gets breached – you’ll experience a major dent to your reputation either way. Make sure to choose a cyber-secure payment processor – and update your hardware/software on your end as well.

ProPay has been providing thousands of merchants (with more joining each day) with excellent payment processor services since the 1990s. Contact us today to learn more about our state-of-the-art cyber security measures – and how we can help your business succeed further.

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