The United States is finally implementing important safeguards for credit cards and that means entrepreneurs and small businesses that handle customer information, and those that use credit card processing companies, need to get up to speed.

EMV chip technology is a major upgrade from the current magnetic strip most American credit cards use, allowing increased payment options to consumers, better protection and encrypted services, and easier access to personal finances. Magnetic strips were easy to copy and the information on the card is actually quite easily accessible, whereas the EMV chips are nearly impossible to replicate and offer an added layer of security to sensitive data. Where EMV chips have been implemented, such as Europe and Asia, credit card fraud has dropped as well, and losses from card skimmers also dropped.

But there’s one major thing holding back these advances in consumer protection: slow adopters. To increase the security for your consumers, both big and small businesses alike will need to upgrade to new POS terminal devices that are EMV compliant. It might require a little more time to read, but these need upgrades need to happen for everyone’s monetary safety.

As a business owner or entrepreneur, you’ll need to do a couple things in order to become completely EMV compliant.

Adopt sooner

EMV is the new law of the land, so get with the times! The sooner you adopt, the sooner you can protect yourself and your customers. It can also be cheaper sometimes to adopt sooner. Often, companies related to the credit card industry are willing to offer deals for early adopters and the government might even offer you rebates or discounts for taking early steps to protect yourself and customers from fraud. Additionally, it paves the way for you to accept these payments in the future, which means you won’t lose out on sales because you can’t accept a customer’s new-fangled card.

The majority of people will have to adopt by the end of 2015 and all automated devices will have to be switched over by 2017. Meeting these goals will ensure you won’t have to pay a liability cost also. It might be a little painful financially, but like ripping off a bandaid it’s best done quickly!

2. Tell your consumers about any updates or changes in policy.

If you are an online business, obviously you won’t have to handle all these credit card issues, but your credit card processor will. As the processors update, their terms and conditions will also update and your customers will need to be informed immediately, Always keep your customers informed about any updates, and it’s never a bad idea to offer information or educational resources to your consumers in the case of hacking or hijacking or service issues.

3. Upgrade your POS terminals

EMV compliant POS terminals aren’t that expensive. There’s some new technology, and they won’t be cheap – new terminals run between $49 and $99 – but the price of not upgrading is far steeper.

The big issue is making sure that you are only upgrading to the terminals that you actually need. For example, if a terminal offers a service for multiple types of payment but your processor can only handle a certain type, then it wouldn’t be right to spent extra money on services you aren’t going to use. Additionally, some terminals will not accept older cards. These are issues you need to look into before making a choice. Discuss these with your credit card processor before you make any decisions.

Research is always the best weapon a person has against mistakes. Making informed decisions and taking time to formulate plans pays off in the end.

The EMV chip is the new American standard. With greatly improved security, it should find wide adoption, quickly. Make sure your business isn’t caught in the past and use these tips to get EMV compliant.

For more information about this and other important, informative topics, visit, where processors bid and every business wins with an average 40 percent savings on processing fees. And be sure to check back for other educational resources and exclusive offers.

Choosing a Better Processor Lowers Fraud Risk

Credit card fraud is on the rise. Every day, the largest credit card companies are assailed by cyber attacks in the changing landscape of the digital economy. As domestic and international criminals continue their attempts to pry into our wallets and lives, the war for our money spills over into even unrelated industries, all in the hopes of securing large batches of underprotected, sensitive information. It happens all the time, so what are some simple steps a small business can take to lower the risk of fraud?

Take your time when choosing a credit card processor.

Believe it or not, if you’re an entrepreneur or small business owner that relies on processing large batches of customer information, the method and company that you trust to process those transactions can have a major effect on your risk of fraud. The relationship an entrepreneur or small business has with their credit card processor can go a long way to determining the success of a company long term, and the better the processor, the more likely the entrepreneur or company will be able to maintain a high-level of business even at the most difficult time.

So take your time! Slow down and read lots of reviews and don’t just go with the easy or hip option. Just because the bearded guys at the coffee shop down the street use Square to power their processor doesn’t necessarily mean that it will be right for your automotive company or new e-commerce startup specializing in crocodile skin crocs.

Compare your credit card processor options, make a list of pros and cons, but whatever you do, don’t just jump in blind. Making informed decisions will always reduce your risk of fraud.

2. Ensure Account Stability

When working with a credit card processor, it is important to stay on top of the accounts they are managing. Often times, this means the main accounts for the businesses and entrepreneurs, but sometimes it will also mean secondary and tertiary accounts. It might seem obvious, but staying on top of this – maybe spending 15 minutes every day reviewing your accounts and cash flow – can help prevent fraud.

One of the easiest ways fraud is perpetrated is through negligence. Vigilance on these matters can mean the difference between detecting suspicious activity and losing valuable information or capital to a hungry void.

This also ties into the previous point. If you choose the wrong credit card processor you can end up getting hit with various fees, holds, and complications if you are not hyper-vigilant about your accounts and their flow. Additionally, these interruptions and complications can obscure fraudsters and allow criminals to hide within your bank balance, taking tiny amounts that you write off due to your poor choice in credit card processor. Ensuring your account stability is a very easy way to protect yourself from fraud while also remaining fiscally responsible. This is just generally a good practice.

3. Keep your digital resources as current as possible.

No matter your feelings on capitalism, I think we can all agree that the credit card is a pretty incredible invention. The technology that first went into it is revolutionary, and the markets and industries that arose through and around the credit card are manifold and similarly impressive. The credit card can be credited with spurring advances in the fields of encryption, storage, security, and e-finance. But just as each one of these new advances takes place, criminals are there to find a way around them.

Therefore, it is always best to stay as close to up-to-date as possible. Make sure all your electronic services are on the cutting edge, because often times older versions of software and hardware can come with bugs, weaknesses, or flaws allowing criminals access to your funds and information.

This can be as easy as making sure you hit “update” often or as difficult as switching your entire system off Windows 93, but it absolutely must be done. Up to date digital resources are often the weakest point for infiltration, so keeping your software and hardware current can help guard against unwanted access.

4. Get EMV compliant now!

Credit cards are changing for the better. The EMV chipped cards allow for better encryption and faster adaption by the credit card companies. It can offer your consumers benefits and options easier and it will make your life simpler by adding an extra layer of protection to your services. So in the spirit of the suggestion above, get with the times! Make sure you are EMV compliant and stop getting hacked!

There are obviously other things you can do to protect yourself or your business – hire armed guards to protect your receipts, get a team of hackers to hack any unwanted hackers before they hack you, require your customers to give over blood & stool samples at each transaction – but those are arduous, time consuming, and often expensive. The best way to reduce fraud risk is by being proactive about your finances and responsible about your spending.

For more information about this and other important, informative topics, visit, where processors bid and every business wins with an average 40 percent savings on processing fees. And be sure to check back for other educational resources and exclusive offers.

How to Find the Right Credit Card Processor

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How to Find the Right Credit Card Processor

Thanks to new EMV compliance regulations, many small business owners are faced with updating their credit card processing systems or potentially being held liable for fraudulent charges. Though only 25 percent of U.S. debit cards will be EMV compliant by 2016, it’s time to start researching the best credit card processors. The easiest way to find the best credit card processors is by using a comparison site that shows you multiple quotes, such as

Finding the Right Credit Card Processor

There’s no doubt about it: EMV compliance reduces fraud. From hindering dishonest sales reps to securing online transactions, I’ve seen countless benefits. Of course, choosing the right credit card processor can provide even more advantages.

Look at Accepted Payment Types

I’ve come across far too many stores that don’t accept certain major debit or credit cards. This is basically giving away money and ensuring that some people never even venture into a business. Make sure the processor accepts all major cards. Finding one that accepts gift cards or even EBT could also be essential.

Consider Fees Aside from Transaction

I know that transaction fees are what most business owners focus on, but it’s also important to consider the “hidden” fees as well. Some processors will charge statement fees, application fees or even extra monthly fees. Additionally, many card processors include in their contracts the ability to raise their fees, so it’s quite easy to get a price hike. This makes it necessary to find fair rates from the start.

Consider Online Capabilities

Many businesses I’ve seen start out as brick-and-mortar companies but later move into the digital realm. Selling products and services online is becoming crucial, but unfortunately, some processors have software that might not be compatible with all online shopping carts. Even for companies that don’t have online shopping, choosing a processor that allows it ensures room for expansion.

Are New Technologies Integrated?

It’s essential to find a payment processor that allows EMV compliance, but considering other technologies is important for those in certain industries. I’ve seen iPhone retailers not accept the Apple Pay digital wallet, and this just boggles the mind. If a business’s customers are tech savvy, it’s best to find a processor that integrates near-field communication technology.

Compare Early Termination/Cancellation Fees

In a perfect world, no credit card processor would charge early termination fees, but that’s just not the case. This makes it important to compare these fees. If nothing else, avoid processors who charge “liquidated damages” fees. This fee can add up to the full contract’s estimated value, even if it’s canceled months in advance.

To find the perfect credit card processor, visit SlashMyFees, where processors bid and every business wins with an average 40 percent savings on processing fees.