First National Merchant Solutions

How to Comply With the New Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards
September 1, 2005

The new Payment Card Industry (PCI) standards, which recently went into effect, are meant to help merchants beef up their data-security practices to better protect their customers’ credit card information — a commendable endeavor, indeed. But figuring out how to actually comply with the standards has left many merchants scratching their heads. Following are the answers to frequently asked questions about the standards. What is PCI? It’s a new, unified set of data-security standards from Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Discover card companies. Until this year, each card company had its own data-security standards. PCI, then, is a way for merchants to complete

Payment Processing: Batch vs. Real Time
November 1, 2004

In today’s world of payment processing, some catalogers advocate processing credit card transactions using batch (where a large volume of transactions are forwarded for approval all at one time), while others use real-time processing (each transaction is authorized as it comes in). As for yourself, you may want one or both of these processing services, depending on the nature of your business, the type of goods and services you offer, and the internal procedures you use to handle transaction cycles. Using today’s sophisticated technologies, merchants can write complex, rules-based code that allows a customer transaction to flow from one part of

Safeguard Your Gold Mine From Cyber Theft
January 1, 2004

Identity theft is one of the fastest-growing crimes in America, affecting hundreds of thousands of consumers every year. As an online merchant, you’re more susceptible than ever to being an unwitting accomplice to this crime by becoming the target of spoofing: a practice in which fraudsters emulate your Web site or e-mail, or otherwise represent themselves as your company. Moreover, by inadequately protecting your customers’ personally identifiable information (PII) and credit card numbers from cyber-thieves, you may be unknowingly contributing to the alarming rise in consumer identity theft in this country. In the following article, I’ll focus on ways you can reduce your chances