For a non-technical person, it’s one thing to hear all about these payment security solutions from Patrick Carroll, ValidSoft’s founder and Chief Executive and the man who developed them and leads the drive to promote them to the banking and retail community. Seeing VALid-POS® in action and appreciating its simplicity is another.

On The Grocery Trader’s visit to Devonshire Square to see Patrick, ValidSoft’s VALid-POS® Product Manager Jon Alford also took us through a demonstration of a simulated transaction made with a UK payment card and mobile in New York City and validated through VALid-POS®. The transaction is routed, like the rest of the card traffic that ValidSoft monitors, through parent company Elephant Talk’s servers in Amsterdam.

ValidSoft offers coverage for support from its UK operation, if the cardholder’s phone is on and connected to the global network.

To the untrained observer the demonstration shows clearly the invisibility, speed and conclusive nature of ValidSoft’s products, and the check works in less than a second, effectively instantly.

A ‘confirm’ goes unnoticed by the cardholder, but a ‘refute’ generates a call to their mobile from the issuing bank’s fraud department, asking them to confirm a key word or press a key on the phone. Once this is done, the transaction may proceed. Even if the transaction is identified at first as potentially fraudulent, the problem can still be remedied and a positive outcome (i.e. the transaction goes through) achieved in customer relations terms. All of this is fully configurable by the bank.

The second part of Jon Alford’s demonstration of VALid-POS® covered how the technology works for a domestic model. The demonstration featured a handful of ValidSoft staff: the real thing, of course, involves millions of cards and mobile devices.

The card system collects data from each transaction about that card and that mobile, and ‘learns’ it: the first time it happens, it has never ‘seen’ the card, the mobile or the ATM or POS reference associated together. The information from the transaction goes to the bank and is retained there. As the system progresses its learning, it will be able to confirm or refute correlation between a POS or ATM’s unique ID and the mobile network segment ID that it is located within. All of this happens completely anonymously.

As a banking technician, Jon has clear views about how the practicalities of validating payments with ValidSoft’s solutions will fit into the retail and banking world’s adoption of the mobile wallet, and where these technologies will go in the future:

“The same ‘confirm’ or ‘refute’ response is applicable to all electronic payment channels, and applies to every payment method, including mobile. The most important factor, in our view, is the data privacy aspect.
“In other areas of our business, we’re involved in using our four-factor authentication solution for ID validation for government payments to individuals in one of the EU countries, something which is transferable to other jurisdictions. We’re also looking at integration of our solutions into other products and risk engines, and the different needs of the financial institutions to deploy them in house.

“We have some innovative solutions to offer, which are now available. We are a long way in front in terms of authorisation and verification, and very much ahead of the game, and are now embarking on the commercialisation of our solutions.

“Our solutions are very relevant to the retail banks and anyone running large card schemes. In terms of immediate returns, retailers such as Amazon, Argos and PC World have huge issues with the banks and financial institutions, regarding false positives on card fraud, and our solutions bring about an instant improvement for these headaches.”


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