Home > All, Cyprus > Fun and games with JCC Payment Systems Ltd – Cyprus

Fun and games with JCC Payment Systems Ltd – Cyprus

JCC is Cyprus’ main credit card processor, seen by many involved in Cypriot eCommerce, as a nasty monopoly.

But it doesn’t stop at eCommerce, or what you think of as eShopping. JCC is used by many government and semi-government services for bill (and fine) payments. Those services, either sucked in and forced to use JCC, or who are using JCC because they know no better, are doing this via a site called jccsmart.com (don’t forget the “www.” prefix in front of that if you want to see their website; CNAME records and ServerAlias directives haven’t reached JCC’s NOC, that’s all).

My story is about a bill payment to the Sewerage Board of Pafos (S.B.P.). This is an annual bill which relates to the construction of the new sewerage system and I have successfully paid it online via jccsmart for a number of years already. Today however, I am greeted with an error message.

Communications error while establishing connection. No such host is known SocketException thrown by System.Net.Dns.GetHostByName(“Server”) in resolving the hostname.

Eh? JCC fix it! Right? So I send the screenshot to JCC only to receive the following reply from them:

Dear Chris,

The problem is from the Paphos serves and not of JCC. Please contact ΣΥΜΒΟΥΛΙΟ ΑΠΟΧΕΤΕΥΣΕΩΝ ΠΑΦΟΥ (Σ.Α.ΠΑ.) to correct the problem.


Did you get that peeps? If the serves are down, call and try to explain that the socket exception, no wait… revolver dns hostname… thingy, is broken and you need to fix it. Oh and you best ask for Panagis because he knows how to use Excel real good.

For completness of this post, this was my response:


It is not my job to contact SAPA to correct the problem.
If anything, it is JCC’s.

What business do I have with socket exceptions?
Surely, your developer(s) need to pick up the phone to resolve this issue.


After which of course I have received no response… and so I ask… isn’t this just rude and unprofessional of JCC? Or is it just me? If you’ve had any similar experiences with JCC, I’d like to hear about them. This is not the only JCC flaw that bugs me… there is more, such as when they convert my EUR to USD, then from USD to X (and all the surcharges all along the way) when I buy anything which is not EUR or USD, but that’s another story.

And JCC, we are not idiots, GetHostByName needs a valid hostname as a required parameter, not the word Server. You might find that if you fix that then, and if you get it right, GetHostByName will return the IP address of the Server you are trying to connect to. Here are some possible hints which are all legal hostnames:

  • john.sapa.org.cy
  • shitbox.sapa.org.cy
  • shitter.sapa.org.cy
  • skata.sapa.org.cy
  • honeywagon.sapa.org.cy


Categories: All, Cyprus
Tags: , , , ,
  1. Michalis Shaelos
    October 27th, 2011 at 06:27 | #1

    Dear sir,

    JCC smart, the portal of JCC and the banks, is designed to facilitate online payments to organisations in Cyprus through the provision of state of the art custom made solutions. JCCsmart checkout is a Total Quality Process provided by JCC to facilitate these online payments.

    The problems that you described above have been caused by the electricity cuts and due to the fact that the SAPA’s server was unvailable during that time.

    • November 8th, 2011 at 07:46 | #2


      I’ll let the readers of this thread decide for themselves if your response is acceptable (or even relevant) or not.

      JCC can very well be the best payment processor on the planet… with the most expensive equipment available today… blah blah blah… but what’s the point of all that at the end of the day if it’s administrators can’t tell the difference between:

      Communications error while establishing connection. No such host is known SocketException thrown by System.Net.Dns.GetHostByName(“Server”) in resolving the hostname.


      Unfortunately we were not able to communicate with S.B.P. to process your payment at this time.
      This usually mean that the S.B.P. server is currently unavailable.

      Please try again later.

      If the problem persists, please contact S.B.P. on 26 818 202

  2. May 18th, 2012 at 19:57 | #3

    You would expect that the *only* online payment provider in Cyprus, would respond differently and solve the issue. You did them a favor by reporting the error.

    And what’s that error message? I’m a developer (not .NET) and have a hard time to understand what it says. I don’t want to know what the error is. Just tell me whether the transaction succeeded/failed, and if it did fail, what to do next.

    I had an issue, trying to pay a bill, it gave me an error code with some meaningless info. I tried 5-6 times, and as it turned out later the payment was going through successfully! Nice…

  3. May 19th, 2012 at 13:37 | #4

    @Panagiotis Panagi
    I assume you paid the bill that many times then and they had no problem taking your money each time for the same transaction? Nice.

    The problem with us Cypriots is that we don’t complain enough, we just bow our heads and accept the silliest excuses. Unless we put these experiences out there to let others know that they are not the only ones having troubles with certain companies, things will never change.

    A few minutes ago I found a payment for a meal we had back in January, on my April statement. After almost half an hour of not being able to get the JCC machine to work, I ended up paying cash. Twice therefore, for a not so good steak.

    I will have to speak with my bank on Monday about it who will no doubt ask me for the receipt which I have thrown away (no, I do not expect transactions from 3 months ago to appear 3 months later). Hopefully by then, they will have finished announcing their latest and greatest logo to the world.

  1. No trackbacks yet.