The importance of a Fallback POS-System in the age of cybercrime

3 min read
November 25, 2022 at 10:14 AM

Various failure scenarios can result in the in-store checkout option no longer being available. In addition to technical errors or the failure of the payment terminal infrastructure, cyber attacks are becoming a growing threat to brick-and-mortar retailers. According to an analysis by Hiscox, the number of cyberattacks has risen to 34% this year. In the worst case scenario, this means that all running systems are taken offline. Without an alternative and independent checkout system, a 100% loss of sales will follow.

Security for the worst-case scenario

An alternative system can help retailers maintain checkout operations in the event of an emergency. With additional POS software, an infrastructure untouched by cyber attacks can be provided for an alternative checkout process within a few minutes. To ensure that the emergency system can be deployed directly in stores, mPOS hardware modules are recommended. These can also be used in the stores independently of a cyber attack. The additional POS software serves legal requirements as a stand-alone cash register and can also provide a practical addition to processes during normal operations. Mobile POS software is not only independent, but also flexible in terms of installation, making it a quickly deployable alternative to the regular, attended checkout.

For example, when used on a mobile device, the POS system can be used to break the queue at the checkout and offers customers fast and mobile payment options as part of the consultation process

Photo: by snabble 

In addition to an mPOS, certain Android smartphones can also be recorded with the POS software (SoftPOS). By using a SoftPOS, the mobile POS can be used on certain Android devices, such as Zebra handhelds or Samsung smartphones. In this case, employees have the mobile POS system directly on their business smartphones and can scan the items via the smartphone camera and check out the customers directly. The PIN can be entered directly on the smartphone (pin-on-glass), which would make an additional payment terminal superfluous. Standard processes should also be supported, such as:

  • Store-specific prices and promotions
  • Coupons
  • Capture of a customer card
  • Manual selection of items
  • Indicators for age-restricted items
  • Price and weight coded barcodes
  • Deposit and empties

*Snabble serves all special cases with the new mPOS and SoftPOS software. We will be happy to show you in a demo*  

Requirements for an Fallback POS-System

In addition to the principles of proper management and storage of books, records and documents in electronic form and data access, the emergency cash register system used in an emergency must also meet the requirements for data security and tamper-proofing and have procedural documentation in order to be tax office compliant.

The receipt obligation

Since 2020, the obligation to issue receipts - better known as the receipt obligation - obliges all entrepreneurs with an electronic cash register system to hand over a receipt to their customers when they purchase goods or services. So even in an emergency, there must be a receipt. One possibility, using mPOS and SoftPOS, is to hand over the receipt to the customer by scanning the QR code on the employee's mPOS device. A paper receipt should be printable via a printer connected to the network or Bluetooth.

Setup of the emergency cash register

A regular supply of item and price data via the standard interfaces to the ERP system should be ensured so that these are already held at the time of a failure. All sales data should be transferred to the ERP system once all systems have been restored. The connection to fiscalization providers is important here.

Full control

Even during emergency operations, it is important to maintain an overview of the most important KPIs. An emergency fund should therefore include a clear journal per employee, team or branch as a monitor of all sales and the respective sales performance.

Stay secured 

With an additional, independent POS system, it is possible to take precautions against cyber attacks and remain capable of acting in the event of an emergency.

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