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Don't Forget the CISP

I find Ed Freedman's comments in The Green Sheet valuable, and I enjoy reading his column. In the second installment of "The Mind of the MLS" ("Checking in on the Mind of the MLS," by Ed Freedman, The Green Sheet, Nov. 22 2004, issue 04:11:02), he gives some advice on how to pick an Internet gateway provider.

I would add to his comments that when considering a gateway provider, the merchant level salesperson (MLS) should look for one that has a Visa Cardholder Information Security Program (CISP) certification. Otherwise, that gateway would be operating outside of the card Association rules, and considerable monetary penalties could be levied on the acquirer.

Tony Abruzzio
Executive Vice President/General Manager
GO Software Inc.

Wanted: POS Equipment Reference Materials

As an MLS, I would like to have a handy reference to the downloading/programming instructions for each piece of equipment used in the industry. With your connections, I believe you could create that reference rather easily.

I would like to see each piece of equipment pictured large enough to be able to read the keys. The picture should be labeled with the steps in the programming instructions, and the instructions should include:

  • How to enter the programming mode
  • What information must be entered, such as the merchant checking account number and bank routing and transit number and whether the terminal is a "swiped" or "keyed" terminal, etc.
  • How to enter that data and in what order
  • What prompts to expect at each step
  • How to exit the programming mode
  • What phone number to dial if instructions must be entered from a computer
  • How to make the terminal dial a telephone number to retrieve programming instructions
  • How the unit and the merchant are identified

Naturally there must be safeguards, since we are talking about gaining access to the nation's banking system, but surely something could be worked out so that registered agents of ISOs could become more competent, independent and productive.

W. Dan Chance
Bank Card USA


Thank you for your suggestion. This is a formidable undertaking, to say the least. We have chosen to pass your idea along to the equipment manufacturers. Some of them may already have this information available via the Web. We will keep you posted on our progress with this idea.


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