Abstract: The present invention relates to a system for automating data acquisition and processing at a checkstand point-of-sale in a retail outlet. Preferred embodiments include a first local area network of POS terminals for initiating merchandise purchase transactions. All of the purchase transactions in the first local area network are passively monitored to acquire primary purchase data. A second local area network of lane terminal devices inputs secondary data, including discount coupon information, check information and bank card information to a universal system controller. The universal system controller mirrors the primary information, processes the primary and the secondary information, and generates output information to the POS terminals of the first local area network via the lane terminal devices of the second local area network, the output information including coupon verification data, coupon amount data, check verification data and bank card verification data.