Thursday, September 24, 2015

Honor Services Grows to Michigan

Honor Services now provides cloud payment solution consulting to Michigan! PCI compliance must be established firmly on all payment systems to avoid steep fines. Are you ready?

Friday, September 18, 2015

Why I'm Temporarily Moving to Microsoft's Edge Browser

By: Stan Washington
Date: September 18, 2015

By the time I finished writing this article, my Chrome Browser would have crashed about three times! Recently I upgraded to Windows 10 and I was pleasantly surprised with the new interface. I stayed away from Windows 8 altogether because of its terrible interface and hard to find applications.

Here are my thoughts:

Microsoft Edge Browser Works Well

Skeptically I went back to a place that used to be home, namely Microsoft. With previous dominance, who didn't use Internet Explorer? In recent events of security issues, I had to abandon the browser for Chrome and Firefox. When I loaded Windows 10, Chrome stopped working. There is a known problem between Chrome and Win10 so I decided to try Edge.

The browser is fast. I noticed webpages loaded faster than other browsers. This goes along with the spirit of Windows 10. It seems like they heard their customers complaints about the horrible Windows 8 interface and backtracked to the easy to navigate Windows 7 look and feel.

Security is in the Design

Next year cloud applications with payment solutions will be required to use a stronger cipher suite TLSv1.1 or TLSv1.2. SSLv3.0 will be a thing of the past and browser capabilities will change. If you have an older machine then you will need to upgrade your operating system and browser to be able to use these sites.

Minimal is Maximum

I like the minimalist design of the Edge Browser. With few icons and only a couple of options, I feel I can browse and go about my business. I am probably a typical internet surfer. I want to go to my site without the browser bugging me for plugins and other stuff. So far Edge meets my browsing needs.

Will I go back to Chrome? Probably so, but I now have added Microsoft back to the list!

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

PCI Compliance Milestones and Meaning to You

 Honor Services Office - Secure Payments for Small Business

By: Stan Washington
Date: September 09, 2015

What does it mean to be PCI Compliant?

The Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) is a set of requirements designed to ensure that ALL companies that process, store or transmit credit card information maintain a secure environment. Essentially any merchant that has a Merchant ID (MID).

What are the penalties to small businesses for being non-compliant?

The payment brands may, at their discretion, fine an acquiring bank $5,000 to $100,000 per month for PCI compliance violations. The banks will most likely pass this fine on downstream till it eventually hits the merchant. Furthermore, the bank will also most likely either terminate your relationship or increase transaction fees. Penalties are not openly discussed nor widely publicized, but they can be catastrophic to a small business.

It is important to be familiar with your merchant account agreement, which should outline your exposure.

What is PCI Audit Relief for EMV? (October 2015)

If more than 95% of merchant Visa transactions originate from Euro Pay, MasterCard, Visa (EMV) -compliant POS terminals that support both contact and contactless transactions, the merchant may apply for relief from the audit requirement for PCI compliance (but is still mandated to be PCI compliant).

What happens on October 1, 2015?

The party that has made investment in EMV deployment is protected from financial liability for card-present counterfeit fraud losses on this date.  If neither or both parties are EMV compliant, the fraud liability remains the same as it is today.  This date excludes automated fuel dispensers.

Fraud Liability Shift.  MasterCard liability hierarchy takes effect.  The party that has made investment in the most secure EMV options is protected from financial liability for card-present fraud losses for both counterfeit and lost, stolen and non-receipt fraud on this date.

Account Data Compromise Relief:  On this date, if at least 95% of MasterCard transactions originate from EMV-compliant POS terminals, the merchant is relieved of 100% of account data compromise penalties.


American Express
Fraud Liability Shift. American Express will institute a fraud liability shift policy that will transfer liability for certain types of fraudulent transactions away from the party that has the most secure form of EMV technology.

Honor Services Office gets checked monthly on 300 or more points of compliance. Visit for safe payments.

Monday, July 27, 2015

Computer Security Tips to Consider

By Stan Washington
Date: 07/27/15

National Computer Security Update (Click to see what the NIST is saying) but we broke it down here.

Recently the National Institute of Science and Technology (NIST) issued a statement that shows the cloud industry is fighting against those who attempt to attack the innocent. While rules regulations and standards were being enforced in a few countries, others ignored the plea for tighter security controls.

The NIST is working towards tighter international security standards which have already had a positive impact on security.
 Safely Manage Your business 
Here is what you need to prepare for in the very near future:

Microsoft Outlook Users
For those using older versions of Microsoft Outlook (2003 - 2013) you will more than likely have to move to a new version by June 30, 2016.  Payment Card Industry (PCI) compliance is dictating more rules. Tougher Cipher Suites will be necessary to be used and the old versions of Outlook may not be updated (check with Microsoft for the correctness of this statement).

Android and Apple Users
Yes the updates will affect your smartphone. The use of SSLv3 will become extinct and replaced by the stronger TLSv1.1 and TLSv1.2. What this means is if you have an older phone then you may not receive an update to the operating system which in turn will render your email useless.

Chrome / Fire Fox / Internet Explorer / Safari and others
Security updates will affect how browsers communicate to servers to prevent “Man in the Middle” attacks and “Click Hijacks.” You will need to update to the latest browsers in order to keep up with the latest security updates.

What to do now
  1. Stop reading this article and back up your computer (Why are you still reading? Back up your computer!)
  2. Check to see if you have the latest version of your virus scan and do a “full scan” tonight. Older computers will take longer.
  3. Delete temporary files and cookies on your browser. Yes this in inconvenient, but necessary to do regularly.
  4. Empty the trash on email and computers. Just because you clicked delete doesn’t mean you have fully trashed the email or document you tried to get rid of.

Honor Services works with First Data, PayPal, GoDaddy, TrustWave and other partners to ensure the safety of your information. Honor Services Office provides payment and business integration solutions to manage what you do best!

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Build Your Brand as You Build Your Business

 Our Founder on "Straight Talk"

Too often business owners focus on their product without considering their brand. Listen in as our founder and president speaks on the topic of branding.

Honor Services Office is a business integration tool that enables micro and small businesses to grow! Check out the software and ask for assistance on how to grow your business!

 Grow Your Business Today!