imagesAt some point in 2011 (and before I worked at a POS software company), I recall L.A. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa’s . This was before huge conglomerates and universities were using Gmail as their own email provider. In the end, county supervisors decided that cloud-based email providers were not yet secure enough and, although Google’s email service would be far more intuitive and easier to use, they should instead stick with what they were using for the time being.

Cloudy skies ahead

To my knowledge, they are still using their old, rudimentary email provider while Fortune 500 companies, including POS software companies, and even my alma mater, New York University, have successfully implemented Gmail for employees and students. So what is the status of cloud POS software? Should restaurants and retail stores with POS software embrace the latest technology? Does this entail throwing security concerns to the wind?

Don’t rain on our parade

The fact is, mobile is the future. While there are certainly some issues to work out with regards to Android POS software and cloud POS software in general, companies are increasingly comfortable with all things cloudy. For evidence of this just look at the wildly popular cloud service Dropbox. Many individuals and companies keep documents, photos, and videos on Dropbox without concern. Indeed, there is always a flip-side  It was revealed last year that former CIA director David Petraeus and his mistress (as well as terrorist organizations like al Qaeda) stored documents in Gmail draft folders to prevent detection.

Some further thoughts on mobile and cloud POS software:

  • Cloud-based services become more and more secure each day. Cloud POS is no exception. If you consider recent hackings, most of them have occurred on non-cloud databases or banking websites.
  • Connectivity is no longer the thorn in a cloud POS software user’s side. While POS software users might worry about what will happen if internet service is disrupted, what more typically occurs is that transactions will be temporarily stored locally.
  • Malware attacks on POS systems have most recently been on traditional systems, not mobile. One of the latest, BlackPOS, was designed to infect computers running the Windows platform, which then spreads the malware to corresponding POS systems.

The bottom line is that when it comes to POS software, mobile or traditional, you’re only as safe as your weakest link. Companies should take the appropriate measures to ensure that their POS software is PCI compliant, integrative with reliable accounting programs like QuickBooks, and updated with the latest software release.