IT Offers Tremendous Advantages Computer Science Essay

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Implementation of Spot Card gives a significant benefit to vendors from the aspect of cash handling. The use of Sport Card reduces the handling of cash by sales personal which will further reduces the risk of loss of cash via fraud and error. In addition, the process of point-of-sale (POS) device deducts the purchase amount from the chip-embedded balance on the fan's Spot Card reduces the time spend on each sales and this may leads to increase sales opportunities.

On the other hand, POS device responsible for retrieving the correct unit price of products and calculate the correct total sales amount, vendors are less rely on the sales personnel in calculation. Therefore, this can further reduce the risk of human error in calculating total sales amount based on products sold.

Lastly, POS device can capture more specific information about the transactions for each vendor. For example card number, data and the time of the transactions and location code. All information is later summarized for vendors. Details information allows vendors for better monitoring their business's performance.

Fans in the stadium

Convenience is one of the most significant benefits to the fan in the stadium. They are no longer need to fumble for cash and change to make their purchases as long as they have sufficient balance on the chip of their Spot Card. Besides that, Spot Card that can be used at battery-operated POS allows them purchase products in shorter time during the game. Thus, they can pay closer attention to the game.

Besides that, unit price and total sales amount that automatically calculate by the POS machines allows fans no need worry about sales personnel may calculate the total sales amount wrongly.

First Union Bank

Primary benefit to First Union Bank is the extra income generated from the sales and installation of the Spot Card system. After implementation of the system, First Union Bank can receive additional fee via selling player signature Spot Card with pictures to fans. Besides that, First Union Bank will take over all the outstanding cash balances on Spot Card that are unused at the end of two years. Thus, implementation of this system leads to increase of profit for First Union Bank.

Assuming that this Spot Card system work out effectively, First Union Bank can get benefit from the marketing exposure and publicity related to the Spot Card system. Subsequently increase the opportunity for bank to implement similar technology in other business.

While the Spot Card offered several benefits, the use of the related information technology to process snack and souvenir transactions did create new risks. Identify risks for the following groups:

Snack and souvenir vendors

Vendors will totally depend on the operating ability of POS machine since it is used to capture all important sales information of each transaction. Downtime with any equipment such as battery backups or equipment malfunctioning may result in vendors encounter lost in sales which can be costly. Therefore, there is a risk of POS machine's failure.

As mentioned above, POS machine capture all important sales information of every transaction. Therefore vendors totally reliant on POS machine to capture and process all information accurately and completely. Vendors are relying on the POS machine to correctly update and record the appropriate unit price, total sales amounts, quantity sold and others information. However there are some risks that these information as well as card number, location, date and time of the transactions is incorrectly captured. Any errors in the process of capture information may result in greater potential for systematic errors.

Besides that, POS machine keep all the data related to previous sales until the games is over and all information are later downloaded to the stadium and First Union Bank computers. Vendors are dependent on the ability of POS machine to correctly accumulate all sales transactions and the process of downloaded is complete. There is a risk that the process of downloaded information is incomplete. Downloading process may accidentally delete or duplicate sales transactions. In addition, risk that summation of individual transaction is incorrect. For example, risk of a particular vendor's sales is allocated to different vendors. This can further affect the analysis of vendor in evaluation of their business performance.

Fans in the stadium

Fans who using Spot Card and POS machine to purchase products could be affected in several ways. First, fans rely on the accuracy of the ATM-like machines that are used to transfer funds from bank to the Spot Card ship face the risk that ATM-like machines may incorrectly update the chip balance.

Second, fans that rely on the accuracy of the POS machine in calculating of the total sales amount (unit price times quantity) may face the risk of POS machine incorrectly calculate the amounts.

Third, fans rely on the accuracy of POS machines in update the balance of Spot Card may face the risk such as incorrectly deduct the amounts/balance in card.

Fourth, fans may face the risk of damage of chip on the Spot Card. Once the chip on Spot Card is damaged, fans cannot use the card to process any transaction.

Fifth, fans may face the risk of physical loss or theft of the Spot Card. Besides that, fans may loss cash when balance of the Spot Card that are unused for 2 years periods.

First Union Bank

First Union Bank bears the reputation risk. Ability of First Union Bank in implements and maintain POS system is at risk. Successful operation of the Spot Card system would have impacted to First Union Bank's ability to sell this service to another business.

First Union Bank face the risk of ATM-like machines inaccurately transfer balances from bank accounts to Spot Card. There is a risk of incorrect reading and processing of bank information and incorrectly transfer funds to cards. This could result in increase the financial risk of the bank.

First Union Bank was ultimately responsible for ensuring that the bank's computer is operational once data is downloaded from the stadium computer. First Union Bank bears the risk of incorrectly process transactions for each vendor.

What processes or controls might the stadium and First Union have implemented to help reduce these risks?

Important control that both the stadium and First Union Bank should have implemented is through testing of all the proposed system and any changes in the system. Both stadium and First Union Bank should conduct a testing process before any changes need to make on the system. Besides that, both of them should record and review the result due to system change. Testing process should have been performed with realistic situation such as realistic volumes of realistic data.

Stadium Specific Procedures

First, stadium management should ensure that POS machines are accompanied with battery backups that allow POS machines still can be function in case the original power source fails.

Second, stadium management should increase the frequency of download transactions from POS machines to stadium computer process such as periodically instead of at the end of a day's sales. Besides that, POS machines regularly updated backup disks stored in the machines to avoid lost of data during download process and keep a backup copy of POS machine data.

Third, reasonableness checks or proper authorization (computer security) to verify the accuracy of the transaction should be implemented to process individual transaction. For example, transaction with unusual big amounts should be rejected. Besides that, system could have been designed to process transactions only when a valid product number is entered.

Fourth, stadium management should have proper access control to restrict person that can update the price list master files.

First Union Specific Procedures

First, First Union Bank should establish an effective backup plans for the computer. Many customers and vendors are relying on the Spot Card technologies. Therefore, numerous numbers of parties would be negatively impacted by the malfunctioning computer of First Union Bank.

Second, First Union Bank should have to ensure that data of transactions being transmitted from the stadium to the bank are not altered or deleted during transmission. Use of batch control totals would help in reduces the potential error in transmission.