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Securing Campus Payments with TouchNet Payment Center

Using the latest commerce technologies to better serve students
University Business, September 2018

In this webcast, expert presenters discussed the latest commerce technologies. They also outlined how higher education leaders can implement these in-demand payment methods to deliver an optimal experience—and protect both students and the institution—by using TouchNet Payment Center. 


Michael Wilson
Director, Transaction Services

Ryan Audus
Director, Business Development

Michael Wilson: I’m going to discuss marrying three different pieces of technology. If you assemble the payment system that way, that starts to make it possible for you to lighten the load on compliance. The three pieces are software, hardware and processing. You have some kind of software system on the front end that integrates with your finance or student information system, making some of this easier for you. You have some form of hardware, whether it’s a virtual terminal on a PC or a payment device. Finally, you have payment processing, which includes who’s settling the funds into the account, how often you do it and whether or not it’s sufficient.

Your processor is your next step and is your partner in the PCI compliance initiative. If we go through that flow with software, hardware and processing, clearly the TouchNet Payment Center is one example of integrated payment software that could be at the front end of the experience. We highly recommend that the software be tied to the hardware because we don’t think PCs are the proper vehicle anymore to actually do the data entry on these payments. That opens up the scope of compliance to that machine and everything that machine is connected to.

The key is that you want validated point-to-point encryption now. TouchNet is indeed an option for this. We are a validated point-to-point encryption provider for these systems.  

Ryan Audus: When you order the device and it’s delivered to you, chain of control is a big deal, and there are serial numbers you will need to enter and record.  The P2PE implementation manual will walk you through everything you need to do as a merchant to ensure you qualify for P2PE SAQ. That will give you a lot of the information you need—such as firmware, versions of software—and it will take you through and actually show you diagrams of what the device should look like, and make sure there are no external pieces that have been installed along the way.

That’s a big piece of the puzzle for you as a merchant that you will receive in the process.

Michael Wilson: I want to give you two possible methods to start to alleviate some of the PCI compliance paperwork burden. The first is, “How do I knock down the questionnaire from 160 or 80 questions to 33?” Validated, point-to-point encryption with a processor that certifies to that is one way to trigger a shorter questionnaire.

The next level of the question is, “What if the processor has the ability to get you out of all paperwork on an annual basis for these point-of-sale merchant setups?” And that is indeed possible. If TouchNet Payment Center is the software, if TouchNet provided an Ingenico validated encrypted device as the payment device for hardware, and we finished the job at processing, then we can enroll our merchants in the TouchNet point-of-sale protection program. For some strange reason, this is still somewhat of a secret in the industry. I’m not sure why.

All four of the major networks—Visa, MasterCard, AmEx and Discover—have paperwork exemption programs available to merchants. The key, though, is that the payment processor needs to apply on the merchant’s behalf. All four of the major networks realize that by listing that level-four exemption and by saying there’s no such thing as paperwork too small, they would love to provide some channels and some ways to alleviate that paperwork burden. Their exemption programs are exactly how they do it. This requires that the merchant has 75 percent of their in-person transactions going through an EMV enabled chip terminal that accepts contact and contactless payments. This is something that we will be trying to get out there this whole year.

We will be much more active and vocal about these programs because we’re hearing so much concern about the burden of the paperwork on a lot of campuses.

To watch this web seminar in its entirety, please visit