The Sharp Smart Card System utilises the latest smart card technology and not the outdated magnetic stripe option.
Our smart card system utilises a cash register with a smart card reader interfaced to it. All cards can be loaded with prepayments of any value. This is done in one simple quick operation at any cash register and a statement, showing the new balance, is printed. Goods can then be purchased to the value on the Smart Card.
If the Card has insufficient value to cover a meal, the shortfall is calculated by the terminal and can be paid in cash or items can be returned.
When the card is running low on funds the system will alert the operator to inform the holder that they need to re-value their card.
The system is not dedicated to Smart Card and can be used for infrequent purchases on a cash only basis.
The System also has the facility to control hospitality / complimentary meals supplied as well as staff on a free meal entitlement.
A number of security features have been built into the system which include the simple operation of hotlisting lost or stolen cards and automatically transferring any unused balances onto a new card.
If a hotlisted card is later presented as payment for goods, the operator will be informed that this card has been previously hotlisted.
It is also possible to programme the users name onto a card which is displayed to the operator when used, a signature strip is incorporated and it is possible to add photo ID if required.
Meal funds can be paid to the caterers which prevents the need to carry money on a daily basis.
What are Smart Cards?
Smart cards are similar in appearance to standard credit, debit, and loyalty cards. The one significant difference is that smart cards do not have an encoded magnetic stripe, instead they have an embedded intelligent chip.
The easiest way of explaining this chip is to compare it with a hard disk on a computer which can be read or written into.
Smart cards can have varying size memory chips embedded on the card Sharp utilise a 2k memory chip of which only 10% is used to control our system, this allows other applications to be integrated onto the same card.
Why Smart Cards?
Smart Cards are now the industry standard in debit and credit cards.
The major high street banks and finance houses have invested in the change over to smart card technology.
Smart cards have an anticipated working life of 10 years compared to 3 years with magnetic stripe cards.
Smart Card systems are more secure than magnetic stripe cards as the processed information is written to the terminal; and also to the chip on the card, therefore if one part of the system fails then the other part works as an automatic restore facility. Magnetic cards are only written to the terminal.
Smart Card technology is now being utilised by numerous other major companies.
The following uses have been added to our Sharp Smart Card in the educational sector.
- Access Control
- Registration Programmes
- Library Systems
- Photographic ID
- Smart Cards can come in various different formats. Eg:
- Contactless (Mifare)
- Key Fobs….