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Square vs. ROAMPay, Why Your Local Processor, Kentucky CPS, offers ROAMPay To Local Businesses..

By Admin, BuyLocalBG.com, BuyLocalBg@gmail.com/
Tuesday, January 8th, 2012 7:00 AM CST

The following is a blog post from Roamdata blog:

ROAM Data has become the #1 provider of secure mobile phone card readers in the world, shipping 300,000 encrypted readers that prevent “Square-like” attacks on customers and partners.

While Square has given away approximately 500,000 unencrypted readers to anyone who signs up for one, ROAM Data has sold approximately 300,000 secure readers to leading merchant service providers (MSPs) who compete with Square, making ROAM the largest supplier of encrypted mobile card readers by an order of magnitude.  We expect to have shipped over 1 million units by this time next year.  The reason for ROAM’s success is in part due to its patent pending hardware and software design that not only prevents various types of card fraud common with Square’s solution, it also provides a more robust read rate and is compatible with the most number of mobile devices in the industry.

ROAM’s entire system was designed with PCI security from the start.  According to the company, the audio wave hack done on Square at the Blackhat conference last week would not work on ROAM’s solutions, because ROAM’s readers fully encrypt the track data before it reaches the phone and the data can only be decrypted by a secure payment server, which would not recognize third party audio signals from recorded files.  The kind of attack described at Blackhat primarily hurts MSPs with unencrypted audio readers, but the bigger issue to the industry as a whole is the number of unencrypted readers being passed out and used for skimming as described in April this year in the media when Square’s reader was used to skim track data by an unauthorized app.  ROAM had the security foresight to design their solution against these kinds of payment fraud, and thus protect their customers and partners.

Some may deflect this problem as a general mag-stripe issue, and some have argued for chip cards or other more secure means. But the reality is that, for a variety of reasons, mag stripes in our wallets will be around for a long time to come, (we have not even gotten rid of cash yet after decades of trying) – Therefore, those providing payment services with mag stripe have a serious responsibility to make their services as secure as they possibly can.  ROAM has taken the steps to do so, and will continue to innovate and lead on providing secure solutions, be they mag stripe, EMV or NFC.”

For a deeper comparison of ROAM vs. Square readers, see the attached photos of the internals. One can immediately notice that Square has no electronic components other than the magnetic head tied to an audio jack.  When a card is swiped, an analog signal is generated and transmits the track data in the open via the audio jack to the phone, where a piece of software is used to decode the data.

One can immediately notice that Square has no electronic components other than the magnetic head tied to an audio jack.  When a card is swiped, an analog signal is generated and transmits the track data in the open via the audio jack to the phone, where a piece of software is used to decode the data.

Problems with the Square design:

  1.  Without electronics, it is incapable of encrypting the track data before it arrives on the mobile device. Thus the Square reader can be used by any rogue app as a skimmer with zero hardware change.
  2. If you swipe too slow or too fast the data fails to be captured by the software program on the phone, leading to poor read rates.
  3. The physical design has a short “throw length” (guide that keeps the magnetic card from wobbling during swipe) leading to poor read rates.
  4. Without electronics it cannot control the communication protocol between the swiper and certain mobile devices like Blackberry and certain Android devices, thus reducing device reach.

In contrast, when looking at the ROAMswipe internals, the patent pending design is packed with sophisticated electronics that enable power to be generated via sound waves sent by the phone instead of a battery. When a swipe occurs, track data is instantly captured on the reader by the electronics, it is digitized and encrypted by the microprocessor on board, then transmitted via a proprietary communication protocol to the mobile device with compatible software, and then sent to a secure payment server where it is decrypted and passed to the payment processor. This unique design enables ROAM to have superior security, better read rates, and the largest device reach possible.

ROAM’s team has years of experience delivering mobile phone POS solutions to market, and ROAM owns or has licensed a number of granted and pending patents in this space, including exclusive rights to certain IP that are critical for development of these readers.

ROAM Data further provides a full turnkey software solution that can be branded for its MSP partners, from app to provisioning to support portal. ROAM also provides a set of API and tools that allow developers to build their own apps using ROAM’s secure readers and mCommerce infrastructure that is tied to vast majority of payment providers in the country.

Locally for RoamPay you can contact Kentucky CPS at 270-303-4982.

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