Over the past several months merchants in North Vancouver have fallen victim to an increasing number of frauds involving their point of sale  (POS)terminals. Losses have ranged from under $20 to over $9000 in a single transaction, resulting in chargebacks to the merchant.

Point of sale terminal & credit card

There are several ways a fraudster can manipulate a POS terminal; however a merchant can provide general deterrence by taking preventative measures and by being attentive during transactions. Merchants are encouraged to visit their payment provider’s website for information about protecting their POS along with proper card acceptance tips.

Criminals will often cause a distraction for the merchant at the time of a sale giving them extra time to manipulate the device for fraudulent purposes. With the busy Christmas shopping season upon us police are offering tips to merchants to prevent POS fraud transactions from occurring to them.

  • Do not leave PIN pads or point of sale terminals unattended and remain present while transactions are being completed.
  • Be aware of distractions while transactions are being completed.
  • Be suspicious if the customer appears to be entering a large number of digits during the transaction or is taking an unusually long time to complete the transaction.
  • Examine point of sale transaction receipts and verify how the transaction was processed. Watch for manual entry transactions, refunds, force post or offline transactions.
  • Store your Admin Cards in a safe place and restrict access to them. Report the theft of an Admin Card.
  • Where an admin PIN is used, do not select commonly used or easily guessed PINs like 0000 or 1234.
  • Take notice of the type of card that the customer is attempting to pay with. For instance a white card may be an Admin Card.

Should you be the victim of a POS fraud, contact your local police agency immediately. For more information on how to protect your business point of sale terminals go to BC.RCMP.