12/01/2010

Secure Offline Stand-In® Offers Enhanced Offline Processing

Those of you who currently use our Universal Transaction Gateway® (UTG®) are probably well aware of the numerous benefits provided by that technology. Well, now there is one more. Included with the most recent UTG update is an offline-processing feature called Secure Offline Stand-In® (SOS). All merchants worry about losing connectivity to the Internet. Having to call processors to receive voice authorizations for each and every transaction can be a nightmare. If your business relies on rapid transaction handling, these timely telephone authorizations can lead to long lines, frustrated customers, and even loss of business.

Recently several of our customers came to us looking for a solution and we’re glad to announce that with our new SOS technology, this frustration can be alleviated.

Configured through the advanced features section of the UTG, SOS allows you to set a threshold – a maximum dollar value – below which you are comfortable issuing automatic “stand-in” authorizations without requesting voice authorizations. When connection to the Internet is lost, SOS delivers automatic authorizations for all transactions within your threshold, keeping your lines moving while customers (and front-line employees) remain totally unaware of any disruption in service.

While working offline, payment data is stored (in a PCI-compliant manner) by Shift4’s UTG, which issues a stand-in authorization and a token to your system. Your system processes as usual, and as soon as the Internet connection is restored, the UTG sends all stored data out for actual authorizations. Without UTG technology, our competitors cannot create tokens for offline authorizations – meaning that sensitive data is delivered to, and stored by, the merchant’s system during periods of lost connectivity. With these setups, it becomes the merchant’s responsibility to ensure this data is later removed from their system – a responsibility you don’t want.

If you have not recently updated your UTG, or are not yet utilizing the UTG in your solution, please call our 24/7 Support department at (702) 597-2480, option 2 to get the process started. While we have you on the phone, we will be more than happy to help you configure your SOS settings and set your threshold.

NOTE: Be sure to set your threshold value within acceptable risk parameters, as there is always the chance of a card coming back declined when the actual authorization is requested after connectivity is restored. With this risk in mind, we recommend the continued use of voice authorizations for big-ticket purchases. However, for those merchants whose business is built on rapid, low-risk transactions, SOS can be hugely beneficial.