At-Table Mobile Tech and Network Security

This week we’ll look at at-table mobile technologies that will help you make your restaurant tech savvy, as well as security strategies available to protect your business information and your customers’ privacy.

There are a variety of at-table technology options available to restaurant goers today that have been quickly changing the face of dining out. Customers can not only present coupons, deals, and personal payment types, such as credit or debit cards, using their phone, but they can also access a variety of other mobile applications which alter their dining experience. And its not just the diners that have options, many restaurants are now making the move to mobile point-of-sale solutions in place of, or in addition to, traditional point-of-sale terminals.

First we’ll look at some of the options available for your customers. For many restaurants that use the Future POS software, there are a variety of integrated apps that make paying the tab a snap. TabbedOut, Paydiant, and LevelUp allow the user to securely enter their payment information into their pass code protected app and simply settle the check when they are ready. This is especially useful in bar situations, where a customer may want to open a tab instead of paying per drink. At the end of the evening, the customer simply settles their entire tab using the payment information they have stored in their app. No chasing down the waitress for the check, and no waiting for the bartender to make change. Just tap and go.

Mobile point-of-sale technologies are becoming more and more popular among restaurants, allowing servers to freely move about between their tables without having to return to a terminal to place orders and cash out checks. These technologies not only shorten wait times, but increase table turn time and improve order accuracy by allowing the server to instantly input order information via tablet or other wirelessly connected device. These orders can then be sent directly to the kitchen, just as typical orders placed at a terminal would be. Mobile point-of-sale units also offer the ability to accept payment on the spot, removing the need to handle the customer’s credit card out of their sight line and allowing them to sign directly on the device’s screen.

Whichever solution(s) you decide to implement, security should be a primary priority. Because many customers now expect access to wireless internet at public locations, and because many of the apps mentioned above require access, it is important to consider the security of your point-of-sale system and the information stored within it. Protecting your business’s information and your customers’ security by properly installing and configuring your network is crucial in this digital age. The suggested setup for any point-of-sale system is a separate network created by using a switch and two (or more) routers; one router running the point-of-sale system and locked to open access, and a second router for public use. Not only should these two networks be kept separate, but the secure network should be password protected if it is being used to perform basic functions on the point-of-sale system. This keeps your system safe from intruders and allows your customers access to the internet and their mobile apps.

Resources

Image taken from the Ultra Consultants ERP Software blog. http://www.ultraconsultants.com/erp-software-blog/

 

Written by Teresa Glasgow, Technical Writing Specialist, Future POS, Inc.