Bitkom demands allowance of cloud systems for secure cash register systems

In the discussion about the implementation of the cashier law in Germany, the digital association Bitkom demands a nationwide extension of the non-complaint regulation: They think this will be necessary until March 31st, 2021. If this is not the case, the association fears that countless POS systems will have to be converted at short notice to prevent them from being manipulated.

Cloud solutions in demand

According to Bitkom, many retailers and companies want to introduce cloud solutions in the near future to provide more protection against manipulation. In this case, it would no longer be necessary to convert the hardware at all individual checkouts. The problem: So far, the introduction of such cloud-based solutions has failed because the German Federal Office for Information Security (BSI) has not yet published a final protection profile for cloud-based solutions. The providers of cloud solutions for POS systems would however need such a protection profile in order to be able to certify them as prescribed.

“Digital solutions can make an important contribution in the fight against tax evasion. Retailers should have the freedom to choose which solution they use to make their POS systems tamper-proof”, emphasizes Bitkom CEO Dr. Bernhard Rohleder. “Retailers and entrepreneurs should not be forced to convert their equipment at short notice because of a dispute over a transitional period that is a few months longer. Especially in the retail and gastronomy sectors, all the strength is currently needed to overcome the Corona crisis. The Federal Ministry of Finance should hence deal pragmatically with the topic of cash register security and extend the existing transition period uniformly throughout Germany by six months”.

Dispute between the federal states and the Federal Ministry of Finance

Bitkom criticizes that the currently shorter deadline of September, 30th would distort competition and would not guarantee the required technological openness of technical security devices. All federal states with the exception of Bremen have announced an extension of this deadline until March 31, 2021 in the event that the companies have demonstrably already concluded a contract with a provider of technical security equipment (TSE). However, the responsible Federal Ministry of Finance rejects the extension. Bitkom is therefore calling on the Ministry and the state governments to resolve the dispute. Otherwise, the association fears that the resulting legal uncertainty will affect not only retailers but also providers of POS solutions.