Be Proactive On System Problems


Be Proactive On System Problems

Are you experiencing an issue with your software? If so, don’t let it fester and create frustration for you or your team.

CCS Retail Systems is here to help, if you do not report your problems, they cannot get fixed.

I recently was speaking to a customer about a slow system, as we were going over some of the basic troubleshooting questions, the customer brought up another issue and was explaining how they were resolving it over the last few days.

If CCS was informed of the issue sooner, it would have been resolved in a matter of minutes. Now I understand, everyone is busy, sometimes calling right away is impossible or impractical, but reporting an issue in a timely matter will make those impossible times far less likely because the issue will be resolved, which will free your time up for more important matters.

When reporting issues, the more detail you can give, the better. Some of the basic information we can use is

  • Date and time the issue occurred – This information helps with looking at all the information log files keep and help narrow down issue to a few lines instead of hundreds (or thousands)
  • Were there any error or other messages presented to you – Try and get the exact and entire message, using your phones camera or taking a screenshot can be used. This also helps with log files in the same way as the date and time as well as where to look in the software.
  • What Screen were you in – Examples would be Ticket Screen or Purchase Request
  • What user and workstation received the message. – An example would be John was using the backoffice PC
  • Any information that may be helpful – For example there may have been network issue, we had a power outage, Internet was down.
  • Do you notice any pattern – An example would be, every time I click on the “Go” button an error comes up.

So, If you cannot call right away, the best thing to do is to jot down the information so when you can call you are ready for the any questions we may ask.

A good example of the above may look like this.

On 9/18/17 at 3:30PM John was receiving a “Not On File” error on the backoffice workstation every time he clicked on the Save button in the Inventory/Items screen. We were having power issues earlier in the day and the Internet went down twice.

With the above information, CCS has a good starting point at where to look to resolve the issue quickly.

You can call CCS directly at 800.672.4806 or email us.


Migrating To NCR CPSQL

So you have decided to update your V7 Counterpoint to CPSQL. CCS Retail Systems is here to help!

One of the first steps to a successful update, is to make sure CCS has all the data from your current version.

We will usually ask for a complete backup of your entire V7 Counterpoint installation. This can be from a tape backup, a USB flash drive, or even a copy of the installation directory to a Dropbox or Google Drive account.

Once we have the backup, we can start with a test upgrade that will give us a more complete picture of how much time it will take when the final cutoff date is agreed upon.

The test upgrade is an important part of the upgrade process. Not only does it give us a complete picture of what it will take to get you upgraded efficiently, it will also allow you to review the data and test your equipment and infrastructure.

For example, let’s say you have older receipt printer, this is the time to test them out to be sure your receipts look professional, your cash drawer opens, and the performance of this equipment is optimal for your business.

This is also the time to put the new system through its paces to iron out the little tweaks and changes that may need to be made so when the final upgrade is complete, we have all the settings that were made in the test to transfer over to your live database so you are ready to go on your first Live day of use. When I say “put the new system through its paces”, I mean do everything you would do in a normal day. Put a few tickets in the system, if you use orders, put a few of those in as well, test your printers, all of them, print/review the different reports offered, create a PO and receive it, add a new item, new user, new category. I think you get picture. Test, test and test some more until you are satisfied that everything is working as expected.

In the many upgrades that CCS has done, I find that the more people test the different function of CPSQL, the more the learning curve lessens, less issues with hardware and everything is in place for happy customers and a successful first day using the new system.

Are you planning on updating your V7 Counterpoint to CPSQL?

CCS has done many migrations to CPSQL, it is not an easy tasks and requires a significant amount of time to properly upgrade.

If CCS Retail Systems is helping you with your upgrade, we have plans in place to help make the process easier for you.

Part of our plan is to do a test upgrade and let you (our customers) see the end result and check that the all data that has been upgraded is there and settings are set for the way you do business.

This test upgrade is the time when you should test every part of your business in the new software, to be sure work the way you expect.

This would also include testing your hardware and your environment to be sure all your devices, network, and report printers will work.


Contactless Payments.

Contactless Payments.
Contactless payment systems are credit cards and debit cards, key fobs, smartcards or other devices that use radio-frequency identification for making secure payments. The embedded chip and antenna enable consumers to wave their card or fob over a reader at the point of sale.
Some suppliers claim that transactions can be almost twice as fast as a conventional cash, credit, or debit card purchase. Because no signature or PIN verification is typically required, contactless purchases are limited to US$25 in the U.S., A$100 in Australia, NZD$80 in New Zealand, €25 in most euro area countries (€15 in Ireland) and £20 in the UK (to be increased to £30 from September 2015).Those unauthorized may still take advantage of contactless payment systems as no identification occurs before payment except for certain devices. However, owners may block transactions which may provide relatively short time frame, if any, for fraudulent activities to occur of any kind.
Research indicates that consumers are likely to spend more money due to the ease of small transactions.[2] MasterCard Canada says it has seen "about 25 percent" higher spending by users of its PayPass-brand RFID credit cards.
NCR Counterpoint will be supporting Contactless Payments with a Service Pack update to version 8.4.6 due out in mid May 2015 and in the 3rd quarter of 2015 for version 8.5  
If you would like more information about Contactless Payments, contact the CCS Retail Systems Support Department @ 800.672.4806 or email us.

How do EMV chip and PCI DSS work together?

Sourced from EMV Connection

How do EMV chip and PCI DSS work together?

EMV chip has strong security features that have been proven to reduce counterfeit card fraud at card-present retail environments. The PCI Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) provides other complementary levels of security necessary when the cardholder information reaches the merchant’s system. The PCI DSS contains 12 key technical and operational requirements. Rather than focusing on a specific category of fraud, the PCI DSS seeks to protect cardholder and sensitive authentication data anywhere this data is present within the payment eco-system, thus limiting the availability of this data to fraudsters. When used together, EMV chip and PCI DSS can reduce and enhance the security of the payments ecosystem.

If you have any system questions or concerns, contact the CCS Retail Systems Support Department at 800.672.4806 or email us.




What is the proven impact of EMV adoption on payment card fraud?

Sourced From EMV Connection 

What is the proven impact of EMV adoption on payment card fraud?

Countries implementing EMV chip payments have reported a decrease in card fraud. As an example of the impact of EMV, the UK Cards Association has reported a dramatic reduction in fraud since the introduction of EMV cards.
“Fraud on lost and stolen cards is now at its lowest level for two decades and counterfeit card fraud losses have also fallen and are at their lowest level since 1999. Losses at U.K. retailers have fallen by 67 percent since 2004; lost and stolen card fraud fell by 58 percent between 2004 and 2009; and mail non-receipt fraud has fallen by 91 percent since 2004.” Similarly, the national roll-out of EMV in Canada in 2008 had a dramatic impact on fraud. Losses from debit card skimming in Canada fell from CAD$142 million in 2009 to CAD$38.5 million in 2012, according to the Interac Association[i]. Interac debit card fraud losses as a result of skimming hit a record low in 2013, decreasing to $29.5 million.

The experiences of the U.K. and other countries that have adopted EMV have shown a reduction of domestic card-present fraud. But their experiences have also shown a migration to other types of fraud, namely card-not-present (CNP) fraud and cross-border counterfeit fraud (particularly ATM fraud). Fraud migration offsets some of the savings from the decrease in domestic card-present fraud. This reality reinforces the need for a layered approach to security, even with EMV deployment, to address fraud migration and other security vulnerabilities.

EMV can also address CNP fraud, as described in my blog here.

If you have any system questions or concerns, contact the CCS Retail Systems Support Department at 800.672.4806 or email us.


Where has EMV been adopted?

Where has EMV been adopted?
Eighty countries globally are in various stages of EMV chip migration, including Canada and countries in Europe, Latin America and Asia. According to EMVCo, as of December 2013: 
  • 2.37 billion chip payment cards are in use
  • 99.9% of terminals in Europe are chip-enabled
  • 84.7% of terminals in Canada, Latin America, and the Caribbean are chip-enabled
  • 86.3% of terminals in Africa and the Middle East are chip-enabled
  • 71.7% of terminals in Asia Pacific are chip-enabled
The United States is one of the last countries to migrate to EMV chip technology. American Express, Discover, MasterCard and Visa have all announced their plans for moving to a chip-based payments 
infrastructure in the U.S.
In August 2011, Visa announced plans to accelerate chip migration and adoption of mobile payments in the United States, through retailer incentives, processing infrastructure acceptance requirements and 
counterfeit card liability shift.
In January 2012, MasterCard announced their U.S. roadmap to enable the next generation of electronic payments, with EMV the foundational technology.
In March 2012, Discover announced implementation of a 2013 mandate for acquirers and direct-connect merchants in the U.S., Canada and Mexico, to support EMV.
In June 2012, American Express announced its U.S. EMV roadmap to advance contact, contactless and mobile payments and plans to begin issuing EMV-compliant cards in the U.S. in the latter half of 2012.
Within the U.S., the contactless credit and debit cards that are being issued already include some EMV security features.
A number of major U.S. issuers are already issuing or have announced plans to issue EMV chip cards.

If you have questions about PCI compliance, EMV Support in NCR Counterpoint, or other system concerns contact the CCS Retail Systems Support Department at 800.672.4806 or email us.


How does EMV address payments fraud?

Sourced from EMV Connection

How does EMV address payments fraud?

First, the EMV card includes a secure microprocessor chip that can store information securely and perform cryptographic processing during a payment transaction. EMV cards carry security credentials that are encoded by the card issuer at personalization. These credentials, or keys, are stored securely in the EMV card’s chip and are impervious to access by unauthorized parties.  These credentials therefore help to prevent card skimming and card cloning, one of the common ways magnetic stripe cards are compromised and used for fraudulent activity. 

Second, in an EMV transaction, the card is authenticated as being genuine, the cardholder is verified, and the transaction includes dynamic data and is authorized online or offline, according to issuer-determined risk parameters.  As described above, each of these transaction security features helps to prevent fraudulent transactions.

Third, even if fraudsters are able to steal account data from chip transactions, this data cannot be used to create a fraudulent transaction in an EMV or magnetic stripe environment, since every EMV transaction carries dynamic data.

And lastly, EMV can also address card-not-present (CNP) fraud, with cardholders using their EMV cards and individual readers to authenticate Internet transaction.

In the 8.5 version of NCR Counterpoint (due to release soon!), EMV transactions WILL be supported using an Ingenico ISC250 Pin Pad with a small on-site update provided by NCR further securing your credit card payment processing.

If you have any questions about the upcoming "migration" to EMV use, contact the CCS Retail Systems Support Department at 800.672.4806 or email us.


How are EMV credit and debit cards and EMV payment transactions secure?

Excerpted From emv-connection

How are EMV credit and debit cards and EMV payment transactions secure?

EMV secures the payment transaction with enhanced functionality in three areas: 

  • Card authentication, protecting against counterfeit cards. The card is authenticated during the payment transaction, protecting against counterfeit cards. Transactions require an authentic card validated either online by the issuer using a dynamic cryptogram or offline with the terminal using Static Data Authentication (SDA), Dynamic Data Authentication (DDA) or Combined DDA with application cryptogram generation (CDA). EMV transactions also create unique transaction data, so that any captured data cannot be used to execute new transactions.  
  • Cardholder verification, authenticating the cardholder and protecting against lost and stolen cards. Cardholder verification ensures that the person attempting to make the transaction is the person to whom the card belongs. EMV supports four cardholder verification methods (CVM): offline PIN, online PIN, signature, or no CVM. The issuer prioritizes CVMs based on the associated risk of the transaction (for example, no CVM is used for unattended devices where transaction amounts are typically quite low).  
  • Transaction authorization, using issuer-defined rules to authorize transactions. The transaction is authorized either online and offline. For an online authorization, transactions proceed as they do today in the U.S. with magnetic stripe cards. The transaction information is sent to the issuer, along with a transaction-specific cryptogram, and the issuer either authorizes or declines the transaction. In an offline EMV transaction, the card and terminal communicate and use issuer-defined risk parameters that are set in the card to determine whether the transaction can be authorized. Offline transactions are used when terminals do not have online connectivity (e.g., at a ticket kiosk) or in countries where telecommunications costs are high.  
EMV cards store payment information in a secure chip rather than on a magnetic stripe and the personalization of EMV cards is done using issuer-specific keys. Unlike a magnetic stripe card, it is virtually impossible to create a counterfeit EMV card that can be used to conduct an EMV payment transaction successfully.
If you have any questions about EMV Technology and your NCR Counterpoint system, feel free to contact the CCS Retail Systems Support Department @ 800.672.4806 or email us.

What Is EMV

Excerpted from
What is EMV
EMV – which stands for Europay, MasterCard and Visa is a global standard for cards equipped with computer chips and the technology used to authenticate chip-card transactions.
In the wake of numerous large-scale data breaches and increasing rates of counterfeit card fraud, U.S. card issuers are migrating to this new technology to protect consumers and reduce the costs of fraud.
As the U.S. payment industry transitions to EMV technology, there’s a lot to adjust to, starting with language.
For now the following terms all mean pretty much the same thing: 
  • Smart card
  • Chip card
  • Smart-chip card
  • Chip-enabled smart card
  • Chip-and-choice card (PIN or signature)
  • EMV smart card
  • EMV card
It’s that small, metallic square you’ll see on new cards. That’s a computer chip, and it’s what sets apart the new generation of cards.The magnetic stripes on traditional credit and debit cards store  
unchanging data. Whoever accesses that data gains the sensitive card and cardholder information necessary to make purchases. That makes traditional cards prime targets for counterfeiters, who convert 
stolen card data to cash.
Dave Witts, president of U.S. payment systems for Creditcall says, "unlike magnetic-stripe cards, every time an EMV card is used for payment, the card chip creates a unique transaction code that cannot be
used again. If a hacker stole the chip information from one specific point of sale, typical card duplication would never work "because the stolen transaction number created in that instance wouldn’t be 
usable again and the card would just get denied".

More Next Week

A Few Signs You Might Have Been Hacked/Infected

A Few Signs You Might Have Been Hacked/Infected
excerpted from CSOONLINE.

  • Fake Anti-virus Messages

In slight decline these days, fake antivirus warning messages are among the surest signs that your system has been compromised. What most people don’t realize is that by the time they see the fake antivirus warning, the damage has been done.

  • Unwanted browser toolbars

This is probably the second most common sign of exploitation: Your browser has multiple new toolbars with names that seem to indicate the toolbar is supposed to help you.

  • Redirected Internet searches

Many hackers make their living by redirecting your browser somewhere other than you want to go. The hacker gets paid by getting your clicks to appear on someone else’s website, often those who don’t know that the clicks to their site are from malicious redirection.

  • Frequent random popups

This popular sign that you’ve been hacked is also one of the more annoying ones. When you’re getting random browser pop-ups from websites that don’t normally generate them, your system has been compromised.

  • Your friends receive fake emails from your email account

This is the one scenario where you might be OK. It’s fairly common for our email friends to receive malicious emails from us. A decade ago, when email attachment viruses were all the rage, it was very common for malware programs to survey your email address book and send malicious emails to everyone in it.

If one or more of these have happened or is happening to you, contact the CCS Retail Systems Support Department ASAP to have you system reviewed and repaired.  You can reach us by email or at 800.672.4806