Arduino + magnetic strip reader + paypal = payment processing machine?

Would I be able to use an arduino and this stip reader https://www.sparkfun.com/products/11096 to somehow send payments to my paypal account? Can the arduino handle the paypal api? Has this been done before?

No.

why not? where does the arduino fall short?

David82: why not? where does the arduino fall short?

Make that your homework assignment and report back PDQ!

Instead of working your way from Arduino to Paypal, look at it from Paypal's API point of view (Payflow Pro) and work your way towards your Arduino.... then you'll know the reason why.

The bottom line is, you're just sending data over the net right? It's essentially just you sending data to paypal. So why cant the arduino send packets over the web? Whatever. So the beagleboard is what I should use then instead?

David82: why not? where does the arduino fall short?

The Arduino is not the problem. You seem to have a fundamental misunderstanding about how banking works. What you're suggesting is not possible unless you are capable of defeating the banks' security, and willing to commit fraud.

Why would the banks want to allow arbitrary people to withdraw funds from their accounts? The answer, of course, is that they [u]don't[/u]. You can send funds from your account (once you have authenticated yourself to prove you're entitled to use that account) but you can't simply take money from other peoples' accounts.

If you want to receive money from other people there are plenty of ways to do it (you can even be sent money from a phone these days), but you will need to do it via and with the cooperation of a bank. In order to take money from a credit/debit card, you'd need to be set up as a merchant with secured hardware which your financial provider would supply.

You're misunderstanding the situation. People will only be using the machine to deposit money into my paypal account using a credit card.

First start by getting a website able to interact with paypal. Once you are able to do that getting the arduino to interact with your website is rather easy.

David82: You're misunderstanding the situation. People will only be using the machine to deposit money into my paypal account using a credit card.

No, [u]you[/u] are misunderstanding the situation. You are trying to withdraw funds from somebody else's debit/credit card. To do that you would have to prove to the card supplier that you are the card holder, or that you have permission from the card holder to take funds from their card. By 'prove' I mean authenticate yourself to the bank's electronic trading systems and carry out a secure transaction. This is not something that you can simply DIY - unless you are capable of defeating the bank's security systems and willing to commit fraud. What you're suggesting is fundamentally impossible; if it were possible, then any of us would be able to withdraw funds from any credit card we got sight of, and of course people would simply steal money left right and center.

The bottom line is that if you want to be able to accept payments from a given type of card you need to persuade the card issuer to give you a merchant account and the associated hardware.

It should be the same as when you're typing your CC info into paypal to purchase something in the situation where you don't have a paypal account. After you've typed the card #, exp date, security #, etc., the web form just simply sends that data to paypal. Paypal makes an CC reader and app for smart phones for this very purpose. I guess I should just use a smart phone with a WiFi connection instead. what do you think?

Paypal makes an CC reader and app for smart phones for this very purpose. I guess I should just use a smart phone with a WiFi connection instead. what do you think?

That would be your easiest solution. Otherwise you can setup a website that takes payments through paypal and then have your arduino interact with that website.

Hi - I'm one of the developers of PayPal Here, our card reading mobile app. What you're describing is in theory possible, though you'd pay the "card not present" rate (3.5% + $.15 in the US) because you're using an unencrypted crappo swiper. But we do have APIs that would let you do this. In theory you could use our reader too, but then you'd have to reverse engineer the audio interface which would be a pain in the arse. It would be a cool demo though, so if I can provide help, I'm happy to.

djMax: Hi - I'm one of the developers of PayPal Here, our card reading mobile app. What you're describing is in theory possible, though you'd pay the "card not present" rate (3.5% + $.15 in the US) because you're using an unencrypted crappo swiper. But we do have APIs that would let you do this. In theory you could use our reader too, but then you'd have to reverse engineer the audio interface which would be a pain in the arse. It would be a cool demo though, so if I can provide help, I'm happy to.

You means PayPal support "card in present" rate now ? if yes then what is the rate? "3.5% + $.15 in the US" is great rate for "card not present", but I guess it is only good for low risk merchant products?

djMax: Hi - I'm one of the developers of PayPal Here, our card reading mobile app. What you're describing is in theory possible, though you'd pay the "card not present" rate (3.5% + $.15 in the US) because you're using an unencrypted crappo swiper. But we do have APIs that would let you do this. In theory you could use our reader too, but then you'd have to reverse engineer the audio interface which would be a pain in the arse. It would be a cool demo though, so if I can provide help, I'm happy to.

It now seems that the best solution is to simply have paypal buttons put on the my site that they can click instead of the whole card-swiper thing.

@David82, Do Not Give Up Too Soon

@djMax, I found Paypal reader here , The reader looks cool, I guess it is OEM/Repackage of square credit reader.

The square reader is reverse engineer the iphone audio interface as well as iOS which would be a little a bit pain in the butt to use, the speed of swip and make sure insert it properly, and it only support one track of card.

In the other side We Arduino is able to connect the magnetic card reader/writer to read or write all 3 tracks of card, meanwhile Arduino support PayPass reader to read/write PayPass contact-less credit card, and it support contact reader to support ISO/IEC 7810 interface contact credit card.

All above of reader/writers could have bank industry certification. The writing function is in theory only, the reason is obviously.

there's no point in using a card reader when they can just click a paypal button and type in their cc info or log into their paypal account. The transactions are, at most frequent, once a week.

David82: there's no point in using a card reader when they can just click a paypal button and type in their cc info or log into their paypal account. The transactions are, at most frequent, once a week.

You might be missing the point "card in present" v.s. "card not present", by your idea , say "card in present" rate is 1.5%, every 10k credit card transaction will save you 200 USD. It is your idea and your money.

what are the two different rates?

David82: what are the two different rates?

That is the djMax told us;-

What you're describing is in theory possible, though you'd pay the "card not present" rate (3.5% + $.15 in the US) because you're using an unencrypted crappo swiper.