Nationwide disruption: problems with card payments continue

Due to a technical error, purchases with EC and credit cards have not been possible at some drugstores, supermarkets, petrol stations and retailers for days.

Nationwide disruption: problems with card payments continue

Due to a technical error, purchases with EC and credit cards have not been possible at some drugstores, supermarkets, petrol stations and retailers for days. Payments with Apple Pay or Google Pay cannot be made either. Often only cash payment is still possible.

Customers in the German retail sector are still sometimes confronted with problems when making payments by giro or credit card. "The disruptions continue," said a spokesman for the financial service provider Concardis on Thursday afternoon. "We continue to wait for signals from Verifone."

A spokeswoman for the payment service provider Payone made a similar statement. Since Tuesday evening, there have been significant nationwide restrictions on the processing of transactions at H5000 card payment terminals from the manufacturer Verifone.

The US company first commented on the problems on Thursday and announced a solution. "We will shortly provide a software update for our customers to fix the problem and will inform our customers as soon as this is available," said a spokesman for Verifone Germany. According to the information, the terminal type H5000 is mainly used in Germany. We apologize for the inconvenience and are working to resolve the issue with the highest priority.

According to Payone, the cause of the disruption is a certificate error within certain versions of the software provided by Verifone. The payment service provider does not expect that the announced software update can be implemented quickly because - according to previous information - manual intervention at the terminals is necessary. "This complex process can therefore not be carried out ad hoc in the area, but will take a long time," it said. We want to support our customers with this.

The Concardis spokesman said something similar: "We try to support the retailers affected as much as possible, for example by exchanging terminals where possible".

As a result, card payment is currently not an option in some retail outlets. The discounter Aldi Nord, for example, announced on Wednesday that card payments were not possible in some branches or elsewhere in retail due to the disruption. "Our provider is still working at full speed on a solution," it said on Thursday about the current status.

The drugstore chain Rossmann and Edeka also reported problems on Wednesday. According to their own statement, Aldi Süd, Lidl and the Rewe Group, i.e. the markets of Rewe, Penny and the Toom Baumarkt, are not affected. The German Retail Association (HDE) had emphasized that companies depend on the smooth running of the payment processes.

The Federal Association of Electronic Cash Network Operators (BECN) pointed out that the cause of the disruption was not one of the network operators or the cards used, but only affected the specific terminal type. "The cause of the misconduct has been identified by the manufacturer in the meantime. The terminal manufacturer is currently working on being able to initiate measures to rectify the error," said the association's website.

The Federal Association of German Banks, representing the German banking industry, made it clear that the terminals in question are completely unavailable for all payment types, but that the corresponding type only accounts for a small proportion of all devices used in Germany.

According to "Lebensmittel Zeitung", large chain stores in particular are concerned that the distribution of a software patch will take several days given the limited capacities. Because even if the first branches can accept card payments on Friday or Saturday, it could take until Monday morning for others.

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