PCI in Review

The number of customerdata breaches has reportedly decreased from over 350 Million in 2008 to lessthan 4 million in 2010 according to Verizon Communications research.  Visa Inc. along with the PCI Councilinstituted programs to encourage more usage of EMV (chip and pinpad orsmartcard) with incentives to reduce PCI compliance fees if they metimplementation deadlines.
Visa issued its own study showing that in 2010 there was alarger percentage of payment service
providers that were improving their PCI compliance.

  • In January 2011 Version 2.0 of PCI DSS and PA-DSS became effective.
  • In February 2011 the PCI Council announced newly enhanced educational offerings.
  • In March 2011 the PCI Council strengthened approved scanning vendor programs with a new PCI DSS training program.
  • In June PCI Council announced that PCI Awareness online training is now available as well as virtualization guidelines for PCI compliance.
  • In August 2011 the PCI Council released guidelines for the tokenization security process as well as PCI wireless guidelines.
  • In September PCI Council published requirements for using advanced, E2E (end to end), and encryption to limit PCI scope.
  • In October 2011 after stating they would no longer approve any mobile application as PCI certified, they announced that they would offer testing for encryption used in new mobile devices that manufacturers were developing or that merchants had in use. 
  • In November 2011 the PCI council announced that special interest groups would be involved in studying online and cloud computing security in 2012 to establish new security compliance standards.
PCI will continue to grow and evolve.  If you have not started addressing PCI inyour business there is no better time than now to begin.  Make it your New Year’s resolution to reachout for assistance and protect yourself as soon as possible.  Contact an STCR Representative for moreinformation at (607) 757-0181.

Update on GS1

In recent weeks manufacturer coupons with the GS1DataBar, as the only bar code, have entered the marketplace.  Retailers will being seeing these coupons inlarger numbers in the weeks and months to come. The expectation is that most retailers are able to process them at thecheckout.  The National GrocersAssociation found that just 55% of independent grocers were prepared to handlethe DataBar at the checkout, with another 10% expected to be ready in the firsthalf of 2012.

The Joint Industry Coupon Committee (JICC), themulti-association industry group that sets coupon policies, originally setJanuary 2010 as the voluntary launch date of DataBar-only coupons without theUPC-A.  However, it became clear thatmany retailers were still not prepared, so the issuing of the DataBar-onlycoupons was postponed until the end of 2011 or the first quarter of 2012.

In the coming months and years, GS1 Member Organizationswill continue to work with their retailer communities to determine when GS1 DataBarwill be used in open trade on any items between 2012 and 2014.  At this point, 2014 is the date when GS1DataBar can be used globally in any open trade on any product.

To be ready for GS1 DataBar, your POS system needs to havethe scanning hardware and the POS software, including your back officeapplication, that maintain the POS item files capable of reading and processingthis format.  If you need to know if yourPOS system is ready, please contact an STCR Representative at (607) 757-0181.

Enterprise-Class Security

It’s not necessary for asmaller company to skimp on security.  SonicWALLdelivers state-of-the-art, comprehensive security that is both affordable andeasy to implement.  Too little securitycan be worse than no security at all, and the small business that simplyimplements any minimal firewall and forgets it, often has a false sense ofsecurity and more often than not, falls victim to unexpected attack.  SonicWALL’s TZ line of Internet Security Appliances,designed for the SMB market, deliver enterprise-class security at a smallbusiness price.

Layered Protection

TheSonicWALL TZ family of appliances are total security platforms that offerlayered protection.  Ideally suited forthe SMB market, the TZ line features a compact form factor and an easy-to-useinterface.  Its sheer power transcendsits small size, and users are able to enjoy true layered security withintegrated gateway anti-virus, anti-spyware and intrusion prevention forreal-time protection against a wide array of threats.  The SonicOS operating system, standard on theTZ family of appliances, gives small business users a streamlined web-basedGUI, easy-to-use configuration and management tools, and wizards to guide youthrough the configuration process.  Bothwired and wireless appliances are available to meet every possibleconfiguration requirement.

Securecontent management

Content-basedthreats are a constant problem for businesses of any size, and SMBs arevulnerable to the same types of attacks that the largest enterprises face.  Secure content management keeps your networkfree from harmful content.  As part ofthis protection,  e-mail security alsokeeps your e-mail inboxes free from virus-laden e-mails, SPAM and phishingattacks through a combination of technologies that improve response time andensure full protection—all the while delivering superior performance and nodelays.

Continuousdata protection

SonicWALL®Continuous Data Protection (CDP) Series offers the only complete end-to-endbackup and recovery solution for SMBs.  Anideal replacement for tape-based systems, CDP provides foolproof, intuitive,continual protection.  Policy-driven CDPis transparent to the end-user, ensuring that data, applications and systemsare reliably protected.  Because mostrecovery involves a single file, CDP’s self-directed restore by the end-userhelps meet service levels while reducing burden on IT support. SonicWALL CDPtakes the complexity out of safeguarding your data by automating tedious tasksto provide a true low-touch solution.  CDPprovides flexible Offsite Data Backup, Site-to-Site Data Backup, LocalArchiving and Bare Metal Recovery with SonicWALL Universal Restore options toaddress any disaster recovery scenario.

Access to STCR's Premier Help Desk is Easy

We understand our clients' business and the missioncritical role the solutions we provide perform. Recognizing this, STCR has been offering easy access to 24x7x365 supportfor decades.

We maintain a team staffed with a highly qualified seasonedRetail Systems Analysts who are constantly updating their skills with ongoingproduct training.  We are always onstand-by to provide immediate assistance. As an IBM Premier Business Partner we consistently demonstrate a provencapability to deliver knowledgeable technical support; ensuring positiveoutcomes and achieving one of the highest customer satisfaction rates.

With an active Help Deskmaintenance agreement in place access to our technical support team is only aphone call away.  You can reach usanytime at 800-776-6576.  With a quickcall you are speaking to a live person who gathers some basic information.  This initiates an issue ticket that isassigned to a team member who starts promptly assisting you.  We appreciate the importance of gettingtimely answers and resolutions in a busy supermarket environment and alwayswork quickly to meet those needs.

We also understand not every situation requires immediateassistance and people welcome convenient alternatives to submitting supportrequests.  With this in mind we launchedthe STCR Online Help Desk webportal, enabling our customers to open a new incident as well as review thestatus and history of previous incidents. Email is yet another option to begin the process.  We use an industry leading call tracking systemto monitor all calls.  It supportsprocess automation to escalate and ensure follow up.

In an effort to constantly improve our support services everycustomer has an opportunity to let us know how we are doing by participating inour ‘Satisfaction Call Back’ process.  We know our systems and thatsupport is critical to our customers' operation.  We take an active interest in soliciting thisvital feedback.  Of course everyone lovesto hear how great they're doing, but more importantly we value the insightsthat help us improve our service delivery and always move quickly to correctany reported concerns.

STCR knows very well our clients' businesses depend on thesesystems and our support.  It has alwaysbeen our mission to deliver exceptional service and proven solutions.  We are constantly striving to achieve thehighest level of customer satisfaction. Discover the difference we can bring and let us help take care of yourbusiness.  We're just a phone call away.