Member Guest Blog: Know Upcoming Changes To Credit Card Processing

by Stephen Bidgood
Mercer Sales and Service LLC

This year, major changes are happening to credit card processing requirements. You may have received communication from your credit card processor of strong new cryptology requirements; these may be referred to as SSL, SHA2, SHA256 and TLS1.1/TLS1.2. MasterCard ID is also issuing new card numbers, and may fine merchants $2,500 if they do not accept the new cards.

MasterCard cards are issued with account numbers beginning with a 5. Beginning this year, MasterCards will also be issued with account numbers beginning with a 2.  The cards beginning with a 2 will be processed in the same manner as current MasterCards.

MasterCard requires that all point-of-sale systems accepting the current 5-series cards must also accept the cards with the new 2-series number. It is suggested that businesses contact their third-party point-of-sale providers directly to determine if any action is needed to ensure their system is in compliance and can accept the new 2-series cards.

Failure to accept the new 2-series MasterCard cards after June 30, may result in non-compliance­ as well as potential lost revenue associated with not accepting customers’ cards. The MasterCard fee schedule for non-compliance is:

  • Up to $2,500 per occurrence for first 30 days
  • Up to $5,000 per occurrence for days 31-60
  • Up to $10,000 per occurrence for days 61-90
  • Up to $20,000 per occurrence for subsequent violations

What this means is at some point in the next year, credit card processing will cease functioning unless your system is updated. It is also important to note that these new cryptology standards require Windows 7 or newer. If your terminal is currently running Windows XP, Windows Vista or POSReady2009 they need to be replaced or upgraded if an upgrade is available. Most systems that are older than 2014 may need to be replaced.

Mercer Sales and Service LLC has been a member of The Chamber since 2010.