ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE A secure terminal is disclosed which has a single keypad and display which is suitable as a debit terminal, as both confidential and nonconfidential information can be entered. Confidential information is entered in secure text mode whereas nonconfidential information is entered in clear text mode. The terminal defaults to secure text mode where all information is encrypted. In clear text mode all prompts are independently authenticated by a secure module prior to displaying of the prompt. Prompts for clear text mode are preprogrammed preferably with an Authentication Parameter which is confirmed by the secure module whenever that prompt is used in clear text mode. The invention is also directed to the methods for rendering a terminal and system secure for receiving confidential and nonconfidential information.