The retail sector is a hotspot for cybercrime. Recent retail data breaches include Neiman Marcus (the personal data of 4.6 million customer was exposed, including payment card details) Wegmans, Guess, Panasonic, J Crew, Macy’s and Uniqlo, to name but a few.
The amount of sensitive data that retailers hold, combined with the drive for companies to make it easier for consumers to shop, make retail a particularly attractive target for cyber criminals. Consequently nearly a quarter of all cyber-attacks target retailers and retailers suffer more data breaches than any other industry. In its 2022 security report Thales finds that 71% of retailers had suffered a breach at some point, with 39% being hit within the last 12 months alone.
Understandably, consumers’ confidence in retailers’ ability to keep their data safe is low. Our own research found that 59% of consumers are reluctant to ever make payments over the phone and more than a quarter say that they will never pay this way due to concerns about the security of their card data.
But at the same time consumers’ expectations of retail service levels continue to rise. More than 70% agree that it is important for them to be able to contact companies through whatever channel is most convenient to them, with more than half wanting to be able to switch seamlessly between channels (for example from a web chat to a telephone call) when interacting with companies.
The challenge for retailers is how best to meet consumers’ growing expectation of seamless and quick payment whilst ensuring that sensitive card data is kept secure and, crucially, making it clear to consumers that they take security seriously.
The answer is CardEasy. CardEasy eliminates the risk of customers’ card details being breached by ensuring that they never enter the retailer’s contact center environment in the first place. Contact center agents are prevented from hearing or seeing payment card data and it is automatically blocked from screen and call recordings, without the need for a pause / resume function. CardEasy also facilitates omnichannel retailing, enabling retailers to take secure payments through any channel, be it telephone (via live agent or self-service IVR), email, SMS, social media, web chat or any other digital channel.
That’s why CardEasy is used by retailers worldwide including Wayfair, Avon, Chewy, Sofology, Charles Tyrwhitt, Staples, Miele and Parts Town to name just a few. So why is CardEasy so popular with retailers?
CardEasy facilitates true omnichannel retailing
For example, Sofology customers can place orders via the Sofology website, over the phone or within the retail stores. Employees based in-store are issued with iPads which they use to register customers’ details as they are speaking to them. They are then able to build a basket for customers as they move around the store, enabling customers to look at different options and store the details of anything that interests them. Customers can then access this basket from home enabling them to consider the options, add or remove items and make whatever changes they want until they’re ready to place an order.
Once the customer has left the store, the direct sales team can follow up with them by phone if they don’t place an order online. The direct sales team can see the customers’ basket and answer any questions they may have about it. Once the customer is ready to place an order they can make payment on the website, over the telephone either with the direct sales team or with the store that they visited, or in store using an application on employees’ iPads.
CardEasy helps retailers to boost revenue
Ashley Hill, IT Service Delivery Manager at Sofology, says “Rolling out secure telephone payments to our stores has really helped the business. It’s taken a lot of pressure off our direct sales team, but it’s also helped each of the retail stores to boost their sales figures and revenue. Before, we found that the direct sales team were so busy that we were almost certainly losing customers who weren’t prepared to wait in a call queue. Now that the customer can pay over the phone directly with the store, we have been able spread the load, so we’re getting fewer calls into the contact center which means improved call handling times. Customers are also able to talk to the local store that they’ve been dealing with which we think is a significant improvement to the customer journey.”
CardEasy improves the customer experience
CardEasy is very easy for customers to use. Customers can quickly and easily enter their card details either using their telephone keypad (using DTMF masking) or verbally (using automated speech recognition) if they prefer not to type.
Retailers want to be able to offer both flexibility and a seamless payment experience to their customers and CardEasy does just that. For example, CardEasy offers two modes of operation for Avon – Avon’s automated IVR system enables callers to make a payment without speaking to an advisor, and its Agent Assist mode enables a caller to make a payment during a conversation with a live agent. Callers can use the IVR to make payments as well as complete a whole range of other common tasks from placing new orders and ordering replacement products through to requesting account information and checking delivery details. Using CardEasy, it’s possible to switch seamlessly from Agent Assist to IVR payments and vice versa quickly and easily if the caller’s requirements change.
Jason Earnshaw, Technology and Projects Manager at Avon, says “We wanted to make sure that the experience of the caller would be consistent and not disjointed. The last thing we wanted was for a caller to be re-routed halfway through the call to a different IVR that had been set up just to process payments. With CardEasy it all happens within the same system.”
CardEasy works seamlessly with retailers’ existing telephony
One of the main reasons that Avon selected CardEasy was because it works seamlessly with its existing IVR and telephony platform. Over the years that Avon has been using CardEasy it has made several significant changes to its telephony and IVR systems – introducing a new outsourced contact center, moving to a new SIP based cloud telephony platform, and switching all Avon staff to working from home – all of which it has been able to do without having to make any changes to CardEasy.
Jason Earnshaw says “The fact that we had CardEasy meant that we were able to make these changes almost seamlessly. Using a cloud based CardEasy solution means that it does not matter where our advisors are located across the planet – the process is the same. It just all works.”
CardEasy enables retailers to fully de-scope their contact centers from PCI DSS
This was one of the driving factors behind Parts Town’s decision to implement CardEasy. Craig Schoeberle, Senior Director IT and Infrastructure Management at Parts Town explains “As we have taken on the PCI compliance journey, our strategy has been to limit our scope and reduce our Card Data Environment. Basically, we no longer store or process credit cards. CardEasy allowed us to fully de-scope our contact center environment from PCI DSS by providing the ability for payment card data to be captured, processed and tokenized without it ever entering our environment. CardEasy is integrated directly with our credit card processor.”
CardEasy reassures customers that retailers take data security seriously
CardEasy reassures customers that organizations take their data security seriously. The days of asking customers to read out their card details to an agent are over and growing numbers of consumers will simply refuse to do business with retailers that can’t offer a more secure way of paying. Using CardEasy provides a clear demonstration of how seriously an organization takes data security and reassures customers that there is no way that their payment card data can be compromised.
Find out more
If you’d like to learn more about how CardEasy might work for your organization then please give us a call or drop us an email to arrange a free, no obligation demo. You can also download our free white paper Why CardEasy is the best secure payment option for retailers.