NCR Purpose Built Point of Sale Hardware

By Lynn Skurla Perkins | Aug 16, 2017 4:01:52 PM

NCR has Purpose Built Point of Sale Hardware for Any Retail Environment:

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The Counterpoint Knowledge Base

By Lynn Skurla Perkins | Jul 23, 2017 1:07:32 PM

Did you know if you are a Counterpoint  Software Subscription user that you have access to the NCR Counterpoint Knowledge base on the NCR COUNTERPOINT USER PORTAL.?  For Login  access, you will need your serial number and the zip code that your license is registered to with NCR.

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The Importance of Checking Your Credit Card Batches

By Lynn Skurla Perkins | Jul 23, 2017 11:45:03 AM

In some businesses, credit sales account for over 80% of their daily sales.  If this is your business, you are depositing very little cash every day.  And while most of us count for and reconcile the cash, are you reconciling your daily credit card deposit to the credit card batches that actually go into the bank?  It seems easy and automatic, but here are a few tips and tricks we have learned over the last couple of decades installing integrated credit card systems.

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4th of July Weekend and Office Hours

By Lynn Skurla Perkins | Jun 30, 2017 11:50:41 AM

Our office will be closed on Tuesday, July 4th in honor of Independence Day

  A reduced staff will be working remotely/on call to handle the needs of our customers on Monday, July 3rd.

However, we understand the importance of customer service and issues that may arise during this busy retail holiday.

 If you have an emergency, please call us at 243-2683 and follow the prompts to page our after hours technician.  For support hours and information, click here.

Have a safe and Happy 4th of July.  From the team at Skurla's!

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Don't Forget! MasterCard BIN range expanding to include BINs that begin with a "2"

By Lynn Skurla Perkins | Jun 28, 2017 1:25:28 PM

Reposting this - to make sure you get this done before MasterCards that begin with a "2" start showing up at your store:

Summary:

MasterCard is expanding the BIN range by introducing a new series of International Organization for Standardization (ISO) BINs that begin with a “2” (222100–272099). The “2” series BINs will be processed in the same manner that the “51–55” series BINs are processed today.

MasterCard anticipates that the “2” series BINs will be completely supported no later than October 14, 2016. Customers may choose to enhance their systems prior to the implementation date.

 Solution: Please read!

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WannaCry?  4 Steps to Stay Protected from Ransomware

By Thomas Greenman | Jun 14, 2017 12:12:00 PM
  • There has been a lot talk about ransomware and the Wanna Cry outbreak recently and we’ve heard lot of questions: 

    Am I vulnerable?  How can I protect myself? 

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New NCR Counterpoint Release Features 8.5.3

By Lynn Skurla Perkins | May 22, 2017 10:00:00 AM

New Features in NCR Counterpoint 8.5.3

  • EBT Support for NCR Secure Pay
  • Ability to Turn Off Scrolling Receipts
  • Sage 50 2017 Certified
  • Quickbooks 2017 Certified
  • Microsoft SQL Server 2016 Support and E-mail Format Validation

User Interface Features

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We have a Superhero - and his name is Jeff

By Lynn Skurla Perkins | May 19, 2017 11:34:50 AM

 Meet Jeff Wood - one of our superheros .  Jeff joined us in 2012 - and knows point of sale inside and out.  One of our fundamental core values is Teamwork - and Jeff embodies that value in everything he says and does.  

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A new look and feel when navigating your NCR Counterpoint software!

By Lynn Skurla Perkins | May 19, 2017 10:24:42 AM

The NCR team has been hard at work creating a new look and new features to help navigate through your NCR Counterpoint software! Today they are releasing the new version and providing you with a first glimpse at this new release

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The Importance of a Backup!

By Lynn Skurla Perkins | Apr 25, 2017 5:13:45 PM

This is the most important security rule of all. Back up your drive with all of your data, weekly or daily (or even more frequently), depending on the volume of transactions. A rule of thumb: You should never be in a position where reentry of data requires more than a day’s work.

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NCR Counterpoint Gateway and Retail Applications Reminders

By Lynn Skurla Perkins | Apr 20, 2017 10:21:52 AM

Reminder about Moving from CPGateway to NCR Secure Pay

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MasterCard BIN range expanding to include BINs that begin with a "2"

By Lynn Skurla Perkins | Apr 14, 2017 3:05:23 PM

Summary:

MasterCard is expanding the BIN range by introducing a new series of International Organization for Standardization (ISO) BINs that begin with a “2” (222100–272099). The “2” series BINs will be processed in the same manner that the “51–55” series BINs are processed today.

MasterCard anticipates that the “2” series BINs will be completely supported no later than October 14, 2016. Customers may choose to enhance their systems prior to the implementation date.

 Solution:

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Emergency Supply Kits - Be a Hero!

By Lynn Skurla Perkins | Apr 4, 2017 10:42:00 AM

It's Friday night - your store or restaurant is packed.  Things are humming along nicely and you're thinking - we are busy, life is good!

Then you get the call - we are out of receipt paper at the register - can you bring us a roll?

You look, you panic - oh man - you forgot to reorder last week after they used that last roll!!!!

But you, being a smart manager/owner - know that you have that emergency supply kit tucked away for times just like these!  Viola!  Crack open the kit, and all is good.

Ok, but for those of you that don't have that emergency supply kit, well.....

So here is our advice.  First of all, make your point of sale supplies stock is something you inventory and check stock of on a regular basis.  If you purchase your supplies from us, we can even get you accurate sales history of how much you go through on a regular basis.  Preorder for a couple of months or even a season and take advantage of our quantity discounts!

But the unexpected can still happen.  So, for that reason, we suggest you create an emergency point of sale supply kit that only you or your managers know about and have access to.  Make this a part of your disaster plan!

Here are some suggestions of what to keep in that kit:

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Friendly Help When You Call Our Office

By Lynn Skurla Perkins | Mar 30, 2017 1:43:22 PM

I think it is always nice to put a face with a name.  For those of you who haven't met her in person, we wanted to "introduce" you to our amazing Office Manager, Mandy Richards.  Mandy has been with us since 2015, and we couldn't be happier.

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Are You Ready for the Busy Season?

By Lynn Skurla Perkins | Mar 29, 2017 2:44:47 PM

You know what we are talking about - that busy season - summer, tourists, people in general just out and about more.  And businesses get busy!

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NCR Counterpoint 8.5.3 Release

By Lynn Skurla Perkins | Mar 16, 2017 9:15:16 AM

Announcement from NCR Counterpoint:

"We are excited to release a new look and feel to the NCR Counterpoint product, with our NCR Counterpoint V8.5.3 release! In addition to re-styling the software to create a modern interface, both the login experience and main menu have been entirely redesigned to provide a great new user experience when launching and navigating NCR Counterpoint.

 

As part of this effort to modernize the product and move it forward, it was also necessary to drop support for some legacy features and capabilities that were inhibiting these efforts. Please be aware that support for the following items is removed in the NCR Counterpoint V8.5.3 release:

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NCR RealPOS XR5 now fully supported for use with NCR Counterpoint

By Lynn Skurla Perkins | Mar 15, 2017 11:37:59 AM

We are pleased to announce the NCR RealPOS XR5 models are now fully supported for use with NCR Counterpoint.

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NCR Counterpoint API Released

By Lynn Skurla Perkins | Mar 9, 2017 1:40:26 PM

NCR Counterpoint API is now available! The NCR Counterpoint Rest API will allow secure access to business level functionality in a way that is far simpler than the past. The API is a foundation for future "managed" customizations and integrations are are easier and less expensive to develop, more capabilities including the ability to scale, and easier to upgrade and support. 

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NCR Secure Pay Update - Twitter Alerts

By Lynn Skurla Perkins | Mar 9, 2017 12:30:21 PM

NCR Counterpoint is  establishing new processes to ensure alerts and updates are reported in real time. The primary resource for updates are the CPGateway and NCR Secure Pay status pages on the End User Portal. They will communicate updates to these pages via email and the NCR Twitter account. 

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What Happened with the Internet Yesterday? What is Your Disaster Plan?

By Lynn Skurla Perkins | Mar 1, 2017 11:33:08 AM

Amazon Web Services (AWS) is the world's largest provider of internet-based computing services - almost 150,000 companys use AWS.  Companies such as Netflix, Spotify, Pinterest, Buzzfeed, and Amazon (go figure), use this service.  When AWS had an outage yesterday, it affected hundreds of thousands of businesses!  Dave Bartoletti, a cloud analyst with Forrester, told USA Today: “This is a pretty big outage.  “It’s got north of 3 to 4 trillion pieces of data stored in it.” That's a lot of data!

 Fortunately, for our customers that have products utilizing AWS, they are on a system that offers an offline solution or a solution that still runs even if internet is down.  

However, this is a great reminder that it is time to review the disaster plan for your business.  You have one, right?

Many disasters can befall a small business (power outages, earthquakes, internet outages, fires, security breaches, etc.), but few are worse than losing vital business information. Imagine losing your entire customer list, your accounts receivable data, your sales or payroll data, your menu setup, or your inventory records. You could spend weeks –even months - reconstructing this data. In a worst-case scenario, you might not be able to reconstruct it at all.   If you are on one of our hosted solutions, many of these worries go away.

In today’s highly-computerized business world, many firms are exposed to the sudden loss of information. Natural disasters, computer viruses, mechanical failures and electronic crime can all result in catastrophic data loss. No matter how hard you try, you can’t prevent disasters from occurring. But you can take forceful steps to safeguard your data, and ensure that you can retrieve and restore your computer records should you suffer a loss.  

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Software Maintenance Renewal Notices

By Lynn Skurla Perkins | Feb 28, 2017 8:22:21 AM

 NCR will begin emailing a Counterpoint software maintenance (SWM) renewal (formerly Counterpoint Subscription Service or CSS) reminder to customers 60 days prior to their expiration date. This is in addition to the notice currently emailed to customers 30 days prior to their expiration date. 

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A Quick EMV Refresher from NCR

By Lynn Skurla Perkins | Feb 10, 2017 1:20:09 PM


We are all still hearing about EMV in the Point of Sale world.  And we still get questions about what it means to your business.  I thought I would share this blog post from NCR Counterpoint:

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Quick Tip to Protect Your Point of Sale or Cash Drawer from Theft

By Lynn Skurla Perkins | Feb 8, 2017 2:36:44 PM

Tips and Tricks from the Point of Sale World:

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Take Advantage of our Free Annual System Review

By Lynn Skurla Perkins | Jan 30, 2017 9:40:43 AM

Some of the things we hear often from our customers - "we don't use half of the features of our point of sale system, I wish I knew more about current technologies, we are still having problems with this functionality, or we could sure use more training in this area, we want to implement this loyalty this year, but not sure the best way to approach this."

These are just some of the reasons why we offer a free annual review of our customer’s point of sale systems and related business processes at a meeting with the owners and key managers.

Many customers tell us they don't have time - (or maybe they are afraid there is a hidden cost). So, therefore we are here to tell you how easy it is, and that yes, it is truly free - no strings attached!

We truly want you to take advantage of these meetings for many reasons:

  1. It's free!  It's easy!  If you are in Anchorage, we can come to your place of business; if you aren't, we can easily set up a GoToMeeting conference call.
  2. It's important for owners and managers to keep abreast of the point of sale and payment technologies - these are the systems that run your business!
  3. Employees change - sometimes the employee that helped set up the system is no longer with your company - now is a good time to review your system and any system needs or changes you may have.
  4. We will ask questions, such as, "What are your top 3-4-5 projects your management team has decided to pursue in the coming year?"  How can we help? How can we be prepared?
  5. We want to do a better job for you and encourage customer feedback –  how we can improve our services and communications and how we can help you in the coming year.
  6. Finally, we will come up with a specific plan and action items for the areas that came up during the meeting.

Plus, we like visiting with our customers and learning what is working and/or not working for them - as partners, together we can come up with solutions to benefit you in key areas.

Sign Up Here

What to expect at the meeting for your system review:

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NCR Counterpoint End User Portal

By Lynn Skurla Perkins | Jan 18, 2017 4:07:14 PM

If you have a current Counterpoint Subscription Service (CSS), don't forget to use the tools on this portal.  This site is specifically designed for training and support of NCR Counterpoint.  You have access to the knowledge base and useful training videos.

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Card Industry Delays Continue to Slow EMV Chip Card Transition

By Lynn Skurla Perkins | Jan 10, 2017 12:28:00 PM

 I thought we would share the press release from the National Retail Federation (see link below).

They are spot on when they talk about the importance of tokenization and encryption - which is completely different than the EMV issue - tokenization and encryption help prevent card data theft - very serious credit card security issues that should concern every retail store owner.

"While chips make it more difficult to create counterfeit cards from stolen card data, retailers surveyed said they are also working on technologies like tokenization and encryption that make it difficult to steal card data in the first place."

Here at Skurla's POS Solutions,  we are seeing all levels of EMV solution readiness - we work with dozens of vendors - and there is still A LOT of confusion in the marketplace.  Several solutions that claim to be ready, may in fact be only partially ready.  It depends on who you process with, what payment methods you take (for example, many many processors and EMV solutions still don't have debit and EBT certified on an EMV solution yet), what software you use, what hardware you have, etc.

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Counterpoint Year End Instructions

By Lynn Skurla Perkins | Jan 3, 2017 8:35:43 AM

It's hard to believe that it is that time of the year again!  And if this is also your fiscal year end, there are some things you will need to do to close out the old year and open the new year in Counterpoint Version 8.

 

 

 

 

 

To make it easier for you, we are posting instructions on how to do this.  Scroll down below to download a copy of the instructions.  Or watch this video!

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Counterpoint Year End Instructions

By Lynn Skurla Perkins | Dec 26, 2016 9:00:00 AM

It's hard to believe that it is that time of the year again!  And if this is also your fiscal year end, there are some things you will need to do to close out the old year and open the new year in Counterpoint Version 8.

 

 

 

 

 

To make it easier for you, we are posting instructions on how to do this.  Scroll down below to download a copy of the instructions.  Or watch this video!

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Counterpoint EMV Update

By Lynn Skurla Perkins | Dec 12, 2016 5:25:00 PM

If you are using Ingenico iSC250 payment terminals with NCR Secure Pay, the 8.5.2 Service Pack allows you to process EMV card transactions.

Note:  Your iSC250 payment terminal(s) must be updated to firmware version 14.0.5 or 14.0.6 and must be configured for use with NCR Secure Pay to support EMV card transactions.

Once  the V8.5.2 Service Pack is installed and the configuration steps have been completed, you will be able to use your Ingenico iSC250 payment terminal(s) to process EMV card transactions. You will also be able to enter an EMV card number and expiration date manually when a card is unreadable or unavailable, as well as to add a card on file to a customer record.

Please read below to learn more.

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Processors retiring SHA-1 certificates in favor of SHA-2

By Lynn Skurla Perkins | Dec 5, 2016 9:03:00 AM

Also note that many processors are alerting merchant’s that their support for SHA-1 certificates will soon be ending and merchants must ensure that they support SHA-2 certificates and/or TLS 1.2. For Counterpoint merchants processing payments through CP Gateway and NCR Secure Pay, no action is required on their part. CP Gateway and NCR Secure Pay handle the connection to the end processors, and thus insulate merchants from processor certificate changes for credit cards. For all supported processors these changes have been made and tested already, so no action is needed by merchants in relation to these notifications.

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Counterpoint 8.5.2 Release Notes

By Lynn Skurla Perkins | Dec 1, 2016 8:02:00 AM

You’ve made a significant investment of time, money, and hard work in your computer systems and in NCR Counterpoint. The Counterpoint Subscription Service (CSS) is the best way to protect that investment and get the most out of your software. CSS automatically provides you with new features and updates as soon as they become available.

Click Here to Read the 8.5.2 Release Notes 

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