Retail point of sale system maintainers and administrators should ensure the system is virus, malware and bug free.  It’s important to:

  1. Keep your operating system up-to-date: Keep abreast of security alerts and update your operating system promptly.
  2. Employ an anti-virus solution: And apply updates when released.
  3. Keep point of sale software up-to-date: Security fixes and bugs affect all software companies.  In addition, Payment Card Industry (PCI) standards are revised regularly; your responsibilities and liability increase with each new mandate.
  4. Implement a reliable data backup procedure:  Secure cloud storage,  multi-locatiion physical backups with physical device stored in different locations.
  5. Review your Point-of-Sale program log file: Many reputable point-of-sale programs write an activity log file.  If yours doesn’t, make this a point when reviewing replacement software.  Make sure your log file is included in the data files that your backup daily.
  6. Backup power: Install and regularly test a properly-sized backup power supply (sometimes called a UPS, uninterruptible power supply or SPS, standby power system).  To test, exit all programs on your computer.  Unplug the backup power supply from the wall and log the time from removal of power until the computer powers off.  If your computer does not remain powered up for at least ten minutes, either
    A. The battery in your backup power supply requires replacement
    B. Your backup power supply is undersized for the attached equipment
    (You have too many devices attached to the backup power supply)
  7. Perform periodic maintenance on the computer system unit:   The service life of the system unit can be extended by installing in an area that allows ample clean air circulation around the unit.  In addition, nearly all system units incorporate fans to  circulate air to cool the electronics.  Over time, dust accumulation on the fans, heat sink, circuit boards and vent screens restrict air flow resulting in premature failure of components due to excess heat. It is important to periodically remove the system unit from service and purge the dust from the system unit.
  8. Perform periodic audits: Review these points periodically to minimize your exposure to fraud, viruses, malware,  bugs and premature hardware failure.