Wednesday, June 19, 2019
Processing Credit Cards with Microsoft RMS While Offline
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With Microsoft RMS, you rely on the internet to process credit cards - so when the internet goes down it can be painful.  Most users don't know, there IS a way to accept credit cards even if the internet goes down.  The following article describes how this can be done.

DISCLAIMER: RITE Enterprises Inc will not be held responsible for any problems that occur from using the following processes. The method described in this article is not supported by Microsoft or RITE and can be risky - USE AT YOUR OWN RISK.

When the internet goes down you still start getting "Network Connection Error" style messages.  At this point, if you would like to process the credit card all you need to do is input an authorization code on the credit card process on top of the usual credit card information.  Make sure to input the spoofed authorization code BEFORE you swipe as swiping the card automatically submits the form.

When you do this you will be prompted "Are you sure you want to accept the credit card with XXXXX as the approval code?" (where XXXXX is the approval code you had entered).  Simply say yes and the credit card will go into the batch where it will wait to be settled at the end of the night.

A few things you need to know about this;

You are emulating a voice authorization function of the system.  What the intended use of this function is that when the internet goes down or there is a problem with the card YOU CAN call the credit card company to do a voice authorization.  When you call them they give you an approval code that you're supposed to enter into the approval code field into the system.  The approval code is what guarantees you your money and when things are working properly - this is what the system gets from the credit card company over the web.

So - when you make up a fake approval code the system will accept it without validating it against the credit card companies but this is dangerous for some obvious reasons;

1)  If the credit card is bad you have little to no hope of recovering your money - and you'll only find this out when you go to settle the credit card batch at the end of the night.

2)  If the cashier inputs a bad credit card number - even if the card was good, if the card number inputted was bad you won't get any money.

3)  This might create a bad precedence with employees - if they are educated on how to do this, they may use this function to force a credit card through even if they shouldn't.

4)  Authorization codes MUST BE UNIQUE.  With our clients that use this have a numbering scheme at each register like X001 where X is the register number and after each transaction they increment that number by 1 so the second one would be X002 and have a little tally sheet next to the register so as to not forget.  Far from perfect but it seems to work.

If you are to do this we'd recommend having a policy sheet stating how this works, when it's appropriate AND set a limit for the size of transaction that's allowed.  You don't want to run this risk with a very large transaction.  Instead have the voice authorization numbers for your credit card company on there so that if they are going to ring a large transaction they could get a real approval code.

One other interesting option is that you can use RMS security mode to limit a users access to the approval code field.  We've seen some people have a special emergency user that managers have the password for that is the only user that can manually enter an approval code - they log into this user when there's a problem so the override only works in cases of emergency.

That sums up how you can use Microsoft Retail Management System to process credit cards when the internet is down.  Again - this is not a recommended or supported method so be careful when using this to process credit cards offline however it can be very helpful in certain situations.

Microsoft Dynamics Retail Management System

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