The purpose of this document is to give you an understanding of why negative consumer account balances occur, when they are most likely to occur, and when to contact 365 Support.
Why Negative Balances Occur
Negative consumer accounts balances are a normal part of kiosk functionality and should be expected on an occasional basis. They happen because:
- We allow consumers to buy items when the kiosk experiences connectivity issues. We do this to improve the consumer experience. No one likes to walk away empty-handed.
- Transactions are processed out of order when the kiosk syncs up with the database server. This can be caused by internet outages or, very occasionally, a very high volume of transactions at the kiosk(s).
When Negative Balances are Most Likely to Occur
These are the situations in which negative account balances are most likely to occur: *
- Multiple kiosks at multiple locations (MSL/GMA)
- Multiple kiosks at one location (MKL)
- Kiosks with very high transaction volume
* From most likely to least likely.
Contacting 365 Support
Occasionally there are issues with negative balances that may need assistance from 365 Support. The following two scenarios are the most common issues:
- Kiosks experiencing connectivity issues. If a consumer spends his account funds at a location experiencing connectivity issues, other MSL/GMA locations may not be alerted to the expenditure. When the same consumer makes a subsequent purchase, it may show the original balance, effectively allowing the same funds to be withdrawn again. Once the connectivity issue is resolved, the consumer account will update with any offline transactions, which may result in a legitimate negative balance for the consumer to reconcile. If needed, 365 Support can help explain what happened and verify connectivity.
- Kiosks with very high transaction volume. Very rarely, a kiosk may still be finalizing the previous transaction when a consumer makes a second, consecutive transaction. This may allow the consumer to withdraw from the same funds, which will result in a legitimate negative balance for the consumer to later reconcile. This can typically be confirmed by checking the timestamps on the consumer’s account history. If needed, 365 Support can also check the kiosk’s logs to verify the negative balance.