Never Ignore These Point-of-Sale Security Features

Many small businesses rely on technologies like point-of-sale (POS) systems to process customers’ payments. However, while convenient, these technologies also come with some inherent risks.

A recent report shows that cyberattacks are small business owners’ worst fear, with 60% worried about them.

To help protect your business and your customers’ data, you can implement some tried-and-true security features. Here are five you shouldn’t overlook.

1. Only use iPads

Many POS cyberattacks occur when malware is loaded onto a tablet and then runs in the background, stealing credit card information or other valuable data from your point-of-sale software.

However, according to the cybersecurity company Fortinet, this can’t happen on an iPad because it can only run one app at a time. iPads essentially eliminate the ability for malware to run in the background, helping to keep your customers’ data safe.

2. Use end-to-end encryption

According to the payments company Square, end-to-end POS system encryption works as a communication line that blocks third parties from accessing transferred data.

POS systems should encrypt customer data right when the software receives it, making it nearly impossible for hackers to see the details. Make sure the point-of-sale software you’re using has end-to-end encryption and that the equipment you attach to it, like card readers, is using it, too.

3. Use antivirus software

Just as you take steps to protect your computer from viruses, the devices running your POS system also need protection.

Antivirus apps and endpoint security software find and detect malware before it reaches your POS software. Regularly updating your antivirus software will ensure that your devices and customer data remain secure.

4. Use two-factor authentication

Even if you don’t know what it is, you’ve probably used some form of two-factor authentication before. For example, if you’re trying to log in to your bank’s website with a username and password but have to enter a code the bank sends via text as well, that’s two-factor authentication.

You can use a similar system for POS users, making them confirm their identity before logging into the system. Two-factor authentication can help reduce cyberattacks and make it harder for hackers to overtake your payment system.

Tip: Use identity management software to help your small business create two-factor authentication.

5. Use advanced roles and permissions

A secure point-of-sale system may involve more than just using the right devices and software. Deciding which employees and managers have access to specific systems is also critical for security.

For example, you might want only your senior manager to issue refunds in your POS system. Many advanced point-of-sale apps allow you to assign roles and permissions, so not every employee has the same access to financial transactions.

Small businesses have more potential than ever to be affected by a cyberattack. The good news is that there’s lots of software that can help. For example, password management software could help you and your team safely use passwords across many devices.

The important thing to remember is to implement as many security measures as possible with your POS system to ensure you’re doing everything you can to protect your business — and your customers’ data.

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