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Transact 14 discusses the power of credit cards, technology and Bitcoin

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TRANSACT 14, powered by the Electronic Transactions Association is ending their annual conference in Las Vegas today for the event that connects payments through technology. Jason Oxman, CEO, of ETA released an announcement that approximately 4000 attendees representing 1000 companies from 24 countries have concluded their meetings at the Mandalay Bay conference center. The event is timely as cybersecurity is at the top of consumer’s concerns and digital currency is a part of the future.

Joan Herbig, CEO of ControlScan, a provider of payment security and compliance solutions for payment service providers, took time after the panel discussions on Thursday to speak with me about the conference and the notable impressions of the payments industry. The discussion ranged from security, which is of heightened alert to every business and service provider due to the Target breach, to small business owners and their diverse needs, technology changes of EMV to multi-leveled software security platforms and the increased discussion on Bitcoin and alternate currencies.

Herbig's main concern is to not only provide security and compliance solution implementation to small business owners but to be prepared for any bumps on the Internet highway. Conversation has arisen at the conference about Heartbleed and not only the technical ability to provide any updates required but to listen to client concerns and address issues with information and real-time solutions. The key to dealing with any breach is to immediately understand the severity of the issue and quickly correct it, according to Herbig. Education and preparation are a key part of the business of ControlScan, as she makes it an important level in providing security service to clients.

Compliance is a significant issue for business owners as every business owner regardless of size must be PCI data security compliant. It applies to all merchants who accept credit cards, online or offline. Herbig classifies the clients of ControlScan as a heterogeneous group that is typical of small business owners and includes merchants, restaurants, mobile service providers or local independent contractors for local market product sales, small medical groups, universities and non-profit groups. Because security of credit card and financial data are a number one priority to all businesses and each one is dependent upon reputation and brand protection, this annual event brings discussion and ideas for improvement in the areas of security and it goes hand in hand with superior performance through technology.

Herbig observed that there are 7-8 million business owners in the US and each and every one of those owners who uses a terminal to swipe credit/debit cards will be required to have an EMV (Euro-MasterCard-Visa) terminal in place by Oct. 2015 or be accountable for any security breach and stolen card and financial data. She discussed how Target brought this to the forefront as 2015 looms around the corner and not in the distant future as considered a later priority at last year’s conference.

Bitcoin and alternate currencies were discussed and had a conversation throughout the conference. It is part of the future of payment solutions for business owners world-wide and will become prevalent as a topic as its use and expansion to merchant payment providers and merchants requiring payment of the digital currencies

When asked about her impressions of this year’s conference, she considered that a phrase spoken throughout the conference, ‘without security, there is no innovation’ was a good thought to carry away from the conference and place into planning strategy and tactics. Her thoughts about the conference from pertinent topics, discussions with vital information and solutions and overall general attitude was one of great energy. The summary for the conference which was a daily affirmative declaration is that, ‘this is a most exciting time in the payment processing industry.’

Joan Herbig, CEO of ControlScan, is also on the board of directors for Electronic Transactions Association. You can find out more about ControlScan and contact information at their website.

The Electronic Transactions Association (ETA) is the global trade association representing more than 500 payments and technology companies. ETA members make commerce possible by processing more than $4.5 trillion in purchases in the U.S. and deploying payments innovations to merchants and consumers.

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