In June 2012 Semafone secured UK patent #GB2473376. A United States patent (#8750471) was awarded in September 2014. The patent covers a number of aspects related to the use of dual tone multi-frequency signalling (DTMF) to capture payment card data from a call centre customer during a live phone call and pass it to a payment system.
Semafone’s technology is unique. We hold a patent for our software application which allows contact centres to remain in voice communication throughout the payment process, even while the customer enters card details into their telephone keypad.
Semafone masks the DTMF digits entered by the caller so they cannot be heard by the call centre agent nor captured on the call recording system.
Card details are transmitted directly from the caller’s handset to the acquiring bank, by-passing the agent and their desktop as they do so. In this way, Semafone helps you avoid the cost and burden of Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) controls by removing sensitive data completely from your contact centre.
You can choose whether to implement Semafone on your own premises for complete local control and simplicity or to have it hosted by your own telephony carrier, which brings the maximum reduction in the cost of PCI DSS compliance. Semafone can integrate fully with your existing infrastructure, including your voice recording and CRM Systems, and also with your chosen Payment Service Provider. Semafone is a certified PCI Payment Application Data Security Standard (PA-DSS) solution.
For your peace of mind, we have submitted both our technology and business processes to rigorous inspection by Qualified Security Assessors (QSAs).
Semafone is one of the only vendors to achieve the highest level of PCI certification – PCI DSS Level 1 accredited Service Provider status – for our Gamma hosted solution. This means that our solutions are in line with the standards required for “Level 1” merchants who handle over 6 million card transactions a year. Additionally, we hold the PCI Payment Application Data Security Standard (PA-DSS) accreditation for our on–premise solution.
Semafone has also been approved by Visa Europe as a Level 1 Visa merchant agent, providing further confirmation of our high levels of data security.
Some vendors can make false claims about their Visa merchant agent status. To ensure that the vendor you select & are working with is Visa approved you can do a quick and simple search on the Visa Merchant Agent List website. If a vendor appears on the list, this confirms that they are a Visa merchant agent with a secure and trusted payment system.
The Visa Merchant Agent List has two levels of organisation with different accreditation procedures:
- Level 1: This is the top level of accreditation and requires an Attestation of Compliance (AOC) from a Qualified Security Assessor (QSA). Level 1 applies to vendors that store, process and/or transmit more than 300,000 Visa transactions per year.
- Level 2: The second level is achieved by completing an annual self-assessment questionnaire. This applies to smaller vendors who take under 300,000 Visa transactions a year.