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Consumers have credit card security concerns

Many businesses experience data breaches, and this is something consumers are increasingly concerned about. With companies storing credit card data on networks that aren't properly secured, their customers could be at risk for fraud or identity theft, which leads many people to rely on cash - something that makes it important for entrepreneurs to invest in a cash counting machine.

More small companies face credit card data risks
A recent study shows that not only are many small organizations experiencing data breaches, but they often neglect to tell their clients their sensitive credit card data or purchase history has been accessed by hackers. According to a study by the Ponemon Institute and Munich Reinsurance America revealed 55 percent of responding small businesses had experienced a data breach, and 53 percent had encountered more than one.

"Smaller companies are targeted by data thieves, but they often don't know how to respond when sensitive information they keep on customers and employees is lost or stolen," said Eric Cernak, vice president for Hartford Steam Boiler, part of Munich Reinsurance. "Failing to act in a timely and effective way can harm the reputation of businesses and even risk legal penalties in many states."

Retailers both large and small face risks from data breaches. While smaller operations are usually able to keep these hacks under wraps, large organizations often need to alert thousands of customers, or in some instances, disclose information to the federal government so they can identify those responsible for the hack. In late 2012, Barnes & Noble suffered a massive data breach and hackers stole credit card information from customers across the country. In many states, companies are required to tell consumers if their personal information has been accessed, but there are exceptions to the rule in some parts of the country.

Consumers concerned
As the number of hacks on secure systems increases, consumers may be increasingly hesitant to swipe credit and debit cards in stores when making purchases. Research from Unisys Corporation showed 83 percent of Americans are somewhat worried about identity theft, while 82 percent have some level of concern over credit card fraud, both of which can occur in the event of a company hack.

As a result, the number of customers paying with cash could rise, particularly if data breaches stay in the news. Organizations that have access to a money counter machine will be better able to handle this trend and ensure valued customers can complete a transaction they are comfortable with.

June 7, 2013