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Upper Hand

Sports Management Blog

Stop Putting Your Sports Organization at Risk

Posted by Kevin MacCauley | Sep 23, 2016 3:55:29 PM

How the Move to Online Sports Registration Software Could Save Your Business

Despite us living in a digital world, we still can't seem to get away from using paper for some of our major transactions. While many businesses give us a choice, some continue to stick with tradition in using paper for registrations. One type of business where you see this is in sports businesses, like camp-run organizations, athletic academies and travel teams.

When parents send their children to a sporting location, it usually involves having to fill out a paper registration form, plus paying by check. If a parent pays by credit card, it frequently entails having to write their card number on the registration document, which may get sent by snail mail...

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The fact that some sports organizations are still doing this shows how complacent we have become about the risks associated with using paper. If you are running a sports business using paper registration, check and cash, it's important to recognize the risks using paper-based systems can cause for you and the parents involved.

Checks and paper registrations have numerous security concerns you need to examine so you can start changing the way you gather and store personal information.

Why Paper Documents Are Such a Risk

Here's some startling statistics to keep in mind if you still rely on paper: 61% of all data breaches occur from using paper documentation. This high percentage is no doubt surprising considering how much paper is already stored on-site.

The biggest problem is that too many businesses don't have enough tools to convert paper documents to digital form. It's the same with not having file-sharing systems available to send data to customers or staff.

The most concerning aspect of this, paper is far too easy to lose or steal. No visibility of your paper registration forms, or being able to trace them, opens individuals up to someone stealing their information for personal gain. This could happen to your clients if they have no choice but to write checks.

Checks - A Dangerous Transaction

One reason why checks are often cited as the most dangerous transactions is because of the easy access to the bank account and routing number. Anyone stealing a check that isn't shredded could use these bank numbers to tap a customer's account.

As the business, you could also face check fraud if you don't know who you're taking the check from. It's why you should always ask for ID, plus get a signature on the check that matches the one on the customer's identification. Entrepreneur notes a check with a low number is a possible red flag for a fraudulent check.

Best Practices for Card Payments

We all know writing credit card information on a paper registration can become a security risk. So how do you go about making card transactions possible for parents without having to use paper? Digital card transactions and online registration work well as long as you take security precautions.

Make sure you always ask for the name of the cardholder, their billing address, plus the three-digit code on the back of their card. Most importantly, entering card data requires a PCI DSS compliant platform for the utmost in security.

Never force customers to write card information on paper. Email or live chats aren't the proper places either since they can easily get intercepted by a hacker.

If you’ve been stuck in the paper-based rut, you may already have too many paper documents with credit card numbers stored in file bins. It's time to revise how you take payments for your sports business so you bring confidence and trust to your customers.

Learn how Upper Hand sports management software can provide a safe registration and check-out process for you and your clients!

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Topics: Registration & Events, Sports Business Management

Written by Kevin MacCauley

Kevin is the CEO at Upper Hand, a sports software company aiming to simplify front and back-end office tasks, by providing cutting-edge marketing and registration tools, and business intelligence, that enable unsurpassed performance for sports businesses across the nation.